We may not all fully understand or get big data - especially those of us in the business community - but most of us can conceptually understand how Big Data should have a profoundly positive impact in marketing. So why isn’t Big Data pervasive across marketing disciplines?
Remarkable Potential for Marketers
First, let’s make clear the positive case for Big Data in the field of personalisation - a holy grail for marketers. Combining a large variety of different relevant and high volume data sets to create an insightful view of your customer is powerful. With the right execution strategy these data insights can be the key to increasing sales and marketing effectiveness.
Expand your vision a little to incorporate social, mobile, web, internal and external data sources to create compelling 360 degree views of your prospects and customers is further evidence of what can happen when you marry Big Data and marketing in the right way.
The problem is Big Data is still misunderstood and marketing leaders are unsure of where to start and what the returns might be. The DMA Data Council, a UK organisation that connects, enables and inspires their members to drive business growth, has teamed with a panel of practitioners from the Email, Mobile & Connected and Social Media Councils to help explain Big Data in a more digestible way. The Infographic they produced is at the bottom of this post and I think quite helpful.
Big Data Myth Busters
- Big Data isn’t just about Volume — to maximise benefits for marketing your data sources need to have the variety to reveal insights and ultimately the value to have a positive impact on your decisions. Yes volume is a factor, by the type and value of the data is crucial.
- Big Data isn’t a strategy — it’s a set of tools or technologies that marketers can now harness to increase marketing effectiveness. How you learn and act on the insights is where the strategy lives.
- Big Data is expensive & complicated — it can be, but there are many options that might be right for you. Cloud solutions are lowering the cost of deployment and simplifying the user experience. At Qubix we have developed our Deep Consulting offering to fast track Big Data pilots. A tremendous amount of value and return can be delivered for ten’s of thousands, not hundred’s of thousands of pounds.
- Big Data needs Data Scientists — not true. Yes, it can be helpful, but there is a significant amount you can achieve with the deep knowledge you already have of your business. You can also consider contracting these skills in for periods of time to test their effectiveness or to form your own hiring strategy in the future.
To design and deploy an effective Big Data initiative in marketing starts with separating the facts from the fiction so that marketers have a better understanding and a lower fear threshold of Big Data. It doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive, and many businesses like ours offer pilot programs to help our customers observe, learn and set a Big Data path with lower risk and greater confidence.