Big Data – the opportunities and pitfalls

We all understand we live in the age of “data” – right?

 

Watches being replaced by activity trackers beaming our latest step count failure via bluetooth to E-commerce sites recording our every move and then bombarding us with the same items on every web page we visit.

A recent study concluded that 90% of data has been created in the past two years. Social sharing via Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and others of text, pictures, videos, status and location generate huge quantities of what is termed “Big Data”. But what is Big Data and why, if your job involves marketing, do you need to understand it?

 

Throughout various sectors organisations are adopting big data analytics ensuring when they communicate with customers or prospective customers, they do so from a position of knowledge. When customers visit your website you should know, with the technology available, what product or service they viewed, reviews, promotion influence, page layout and crucially if they wanted a follow-up communication. All of this information becomes “big data” within your organisation. Don’t forget your salespeople can be just as valuable at data collecting as your website using data collecting techniques such as newsletter sign-ups and questionnaires.

This now enables organisations, big and small, to highly personalise their offers and communications whether via offline or online media channels. The eventual result will be to move a person from a customer to a brand evangelist.

However, in this brave new world, lurks danger to the unwary. Data specialists are hard to recruit and using a specialist provider, such as Romax, is often the best way to avoid the pitfalls of data security and compliance. A Mckinsey report states that demand will outstrip supply of data specialists by 60% by 2018.

Organisations which collect data often fail to organise their databases or allow for a connected internal framework which allows input from various data collecting channels into a single customer view (SCV). Many companies have now realised this and are investing in the skillsets, framework and producing clear objectives so as to take advantage of the usefulness of “Big Data”.

 

To conclude, companies be it a startup or expert in business need to keep in mind that this technology is only for those that can handle it. Prudence should prevail at all times but the rewards can make a massive difference to your organisation’s success.

Wes Dowding
Operations & Technology Director

romax_logo_tag_blueRomax Marketing & Distribution, a Greenwich-London based company, provides a wide range of services in Direct Marketing for B2B and B2CDirect Mail, Data Management, Printing, Discount Postage and Membership Communication Services and Consultancy. Contact us: hello@romax.co.uk +44 (0) 20 8293 8550

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