LAS VEGAS—Everyone knows how hard it is to cut through the noise of web-based data to discern what is valuable for your business and building a strategic market position. Doug Curry, president and CEO of Thought Leader Xceligent, explains how massive this task of providing quality data is.  He also details the advancements his firm has made, with a particular emphasis on new industry alignments and the rollout of The interview took place during the recent RECon conference here.

[IMGCAP(1)] With all the noise in the industry revolving around data collection and the proper use of data, how do you differentiate yourself?

Doug Curry: Not everyone understands the complexity of careful data collection. When we began our national expansion a year or a year-and-a-half ago, we were a 150-person company. Now we have 750 researchers. We differentiate ourselves by accelerating the level of research and creating unique processes that leverage not only new technologies but also somecrowdsourcing. A lot of companies are saying that they are going to crowdsource industry data. The correct answer is that someone has to do the ground-level research. With that in place, then there is the opportunity to accelerate that function through some crowdsourcing. If you talk with a lot of people, they would say their vendors’ data is 75% to 80% accurate. We want to change that standard so that our customers expect data that is 90 to 95% accurate. Let’s talk about CommercialSearch.

Curry: CommercialSearch was our way of re-creating a public-market platform, giving users the opportunity to get exposure to the buying marketplace. As we now hit in excess of 200,000 searches of the database, and as we make our proactive data calls, we can now tell people that they will not only get accurate data, but that we can also give them national listing exposure, giving them two-fold benefits.

[Ed. note: after this interview was held, Xceligent announced a 12% growth in listings for the month of May.] broke the story of your new multi-year relationship with CCIM.  How does this change things? 

Curry: The piece that was missing for us was a wider audience of sales professionals. CCIM has 13,000 members, the top sales professionals in the country and around the world. Through this multi-year agreement, we are managing their geographic information module, taking it to the next level and providing membership with expanded capabilities as well as merging that platform into CommercialSearch. How has the nature of data collection changed?

Curry: What has changed is the awareness of what you can do with the content. More than ever, users can start making business decisions based on the inclusion and overlay of various data sets. This is something the industry has been talking about doing for years.