Channel-specific approach to data gathering and analytics is rapidly being replaced by the multi-channel approach, where a marketer has comprehensive information from all relevant channels, says the authorBANGALORE, INDIA: The one goal that every marketer today is fervently working for is the development of the most efficient way to capitalize on the potential of the unstructured, yet highly insightful information being generated online. This coupled with the demands of real-time, audience-centered marketing represents a fundamental paradigm shift in marketing processes.
While the term 'Big Data' may be fairly new, the concept is familiar to data-driven marketers who, for years, have been trying to run complex analytics across a deluge of structured and unstructured data flowing in from point-of-sale systems, web sites, social media, email campaigns, newsletters and other online as well as offline sources. To making a sense of it and understand what it means for your business is crucial for the effective utilization of the same.
Channel-specific approach to data gathering and analytics is rapidly being replaced by the multi-channel approach, where a marketer has comprehensive information from all relevant channels. ‘Big Data’ can leverage all those data points and measurements for actionable intelligence by offering clients high granularity in their businesses.
Using integrated Big Data approaches, we are now forming a holistic data view to gain the fullest understanding of the consumer interactions, intent and value. This current shift facilitates the utilization of customer intelligence, not just for insights but also to power multi-channel targeting and personalization through dynamic digital messaging.
From insight to action, marketers are implementing consistent and relevant messaging approaches that provide cohesive consumer experiences.
Pertinent to the discussion of Big Data is the fact that the key to social media interactions among people is that it leaves knowledge behind for others to find and reuse. This can be the original content that started the conversation or the subsequent comments, discussion, ratings, ranking, retweets, etc. These conversations will remain on the network and form an invaluable history and knowledge repository of society, culture and business that can be discovered, shared or learned from.
Of course, some of this isn’t inherently valuable by itself (much has been made about the signal-to-noise ratio of social media). Also, finding what one is looking for in the vast sea of a million or billion human conversations is a difficult task. Thus, separating the wheat from the chaff is where big data, and the analytics it makes possible go hand-in-hand.
Though social networks may soon contain the visible sum of humanity’s communication and interaction, the challenges of deriving what is increasingly called social business intelligence are two-fold.
First, big data sets itself apart from previous approaches because it applies new ways of thinking about the capture, storage, and processing of truly vast amounts of data, precisely the kind that emanates from today’s social media ecosystems.
Second, big data still remains a specialized niche of technologies and techniques that makes fundamentally new assumptions when it comes to tackling and understanding vast amounts of data. While consumer social networks have long used big data techniques in the custom platforms they’ve built for themselves, enterprise social networks are just beginning to catch up. Big Data is now moving into the realm of mainstream IT.
With this development – as the world continues to become more and more social – competitive advantage will come to those who understand what’s happening better than their peers and can directly connect it to their business outcomes and other useful pursuits.
However, to succeed in a meaningful way at that level of customer-centricity, one needs to manage all that data in a way that holistically fuels customer engagement and experiences. That effort requires a specialized ecosystem of people, processes and technology.
The author is co-founder and CMO of Xerago, a player in Indian digital and interactive marketing space