the ‘Big Data’ what is in it for the digital marketers ?

The most trending word so far in 2013 could easily be ‘The big data’, I was wondering what it could be and thought it would be more relevant to the database and storage experts. While this first impression is not wrong, but there is more and more to it, which makes it a real big data.

If I wear a marketer’s hat, why do I bother about Big data? for that matter what is this Big data? Let me take a precis stab at understanding it.

Make sense of Big data

Use of Big Data

There is lots and lots (really lots) of digital content that is generated, consumed and shared every minute, all of this data is not only shared and consumed but it is also tracked and measured in some or the other form, this data set is not only huge that grows exponentially every minute but also is very complex and unstructured. All of this data is ‘the big data’.

Some of the very few sources that we are aware of the big data are digital content  – videos, photos, likes, comments, updates, tweets, re-tweets, shares, searches, emails, textual content (blogs, news etc), images, profiles, etc etc, etc to name a few. With the power and ease of editing and uploading this digital content to the cloud provided by different tools and devices there is no looking back and ability of sharing literally anything is keeping this big data ever growing.

Why do we need to worry about this? especially as digital marketers ? This data in its original unstructured form has to be processed and has to be converted into information and then to insights which then makes full sense.

  1. This data provides lots of information about the consumer behaviour and if analyzed well lets us predict the winning ZMOT (Zero moment of truth).
  2. Provides us an insight on how well the brand or a product is doing by enabling us tolisten to the sentiments - The social listenting and thereby enabling the brand to re-brand, update or even to stall the brand.
  3. Wealth of information for competetior analysis and more importantly overallassessment of the market place
  4. Lets us understand what the users are searching (looking) for and talking about, this again helps us to position our product or service in line with the consumer
  5. For any speciality industry like the pharma or medical – the community data of the KOLs (key opinion leaders) provides a potential of getting an expert insight on the product or even testing the product in some cases before hitting the market.

Positioning the launch of a new rock album to a hard-core rock fan, providing free shipping options to an expectant mother, engaging with a gadget reviewer in a test before launch etc. These can be few small practical examples of what can be achieved, these are quick examples but consider this data in your strategy and we can really have wonderful winnings.

There are many more opportunities, but these are some that struck my mind and we might hear more as we progress, living with this big data and as new tools (potential business?) to analyze and convert the information to insights and key-words to wisdom.

Useful links:

More about social listening: http://www.radian6.com/blog/tag/social-listening/

How to create listening Strategies – http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/4-steps-to-create-a-social-listening-strat…

Googles ZMOT: http://www.zeromomentoftruth.com/

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