{{ searchResult.published_at | date:'d MMMM yyyy' }}

Loading ...
Loading ...

Enter a search term such as “mobile analytics” or browse our content using the filters above.

No_results

That’s not only a poor Scrabble score but we also couldn’t find any results matching “”.
Check your spelling or try broadening your search.

Logo_distressed

Sorry about this, there is a problem with our search at the moment.
Please try again later.

The big promise of big data for marketers is to be able to use all the data we have. By looking at all the information, big data allows us to explore minute details without the risk of blurriness.

in theory, sampling (which always lost detail because it is a proxy for the full data set) and guesswork go away, we can analyse all the data for every customer and prospect, and provide that customer experience nirvana of just the right offer at just the right time.

If that feels like a big change for you, then start small. Attribution, one of the most persistent of marketing challenges, can be a great area to apply big data for immediate results, and ROI.

There are lots of people talking about big data, so let’s first establish that Big Data is data that has the three “V” qualities:

  1. Volume: There is a LOT of it.
  2. Velocity:  It is created, transmitted and received at a very fast rate, as in real time data sourcing.
  3. Variety:  It is multi-structured (not linear or easily aligned to a structured database format) and sourced from multiple customer interactions. This might include clickstream (website visits), behavioral insights, email and SMS response data, social posts and tweets and search keyword activity.

In essence, big data disrupts marketing. It upsets the normal “container” of marketing data, because the unstructured and multi-structured formats don’t match the kinds of one-to-one relationship of data element with database field (the way that structured data works). 

It upsets the CRM model because it’s fluid, hard to sort and prioritize and not always attributable to a specific person.  It also disrupts the infrastructure cap ex budget. Big data is just that: Big.

Do not be afraid...

Gartner has reported that competitive advantage goes to those who tap into this disruption of data. There are plenty of opportunities that involve harnessing big data and making sense of it. 

At one level, it’s important to just ask questions of the data. You can only make better decisions if you utilize the gems hidden in your vast data storehouses. 

Better, imagine what you could do if you really did use all the data you have. And I mean: All. The. Data. That is pretty exciting. 

You’d be doing things like social community relationship analysis, persona-based segmentations, behavioral modeling, path to purchase analysis, real time offer management, multi touch attribution analysis, advertising and media analysis, and more.

Digital marketing attribution, which is itself the first step to digital marketing optimization, is a good place to explore. Most attribution today is last click, more for the complexity in managing data than from marketer choice. 

But now that we are tapping big data, attribution analysis can track behavioral insights and better understand and serve customers who are interacting across an expanding universe of multiple channels, touchpoints, and data sources – everything from email to search, digital advertising, websites and social media.

The volume and complexity of new data sources require advanced analytics beyond ‘last touch’ or ‘last click’ attribution.  To make accurate budgeting decisions, marketers need to take into account multi-channel, multi-touch purchasing cycles. 

Consider two examples of how attribution could work for you:

  • A major online and offline retailer uses 'big data' to derive consumer insights that are deployed across channels. Instead of relying on sampling, customer intelligence is created from big data analysis. Customers benefit from more personalized experiences.
  • An online only retailer ties together click stream information with email logs, ad viewing information, and operational information in order identify customer preferences and behavior – and how to optimize marketing spend. This includes parsing of Twitter feeds and sentiment analysis.

Responsible data-driven marketers must think differently

Our customers expect it, and our markets demand it. Use this kind of early application of big data to improve your attribution models, and gain visibility into marketing activity to optimize the use of new channels and deliver remarkable customer experience across conversation points.

What is your story around attribution? Are you on a path to tap the disruption of data or are you sticking with last click attribution models?   Share with us your learnings below.

Editor's note: Come join us for our expert video series on Big Data this Thursday, April 18 at noon EST. You can participate on Google+ or on our YouTube Homepage. Panelists include Jim Delaney, COO at Marketwired, John G. Noseworthy, IBM, and Chris O'Hara, who recently worked on our Big Data research.

Stephanie Miller

Published 16 April, 2013 by Stephanie Miller

1 more post from this author

Comments (6)

Comment
No-profile-pic
Save or Cancel
Avatar-blank-50x50

Will Cook

Hi Stephanie,

Really enjoyed reading your blog.

I’d add an additional “V” – time-to-Value. Big data (particularly customer communications via social or email) has a short shelf life. It comes in quickly (Velocity) but to be effective, marketers also need to be able to analyse it and derive actionable insight in near real time. This can be particularly challenging when dealing with rich media formats such as audio or video.

I completely agree with your comment that there are plenty of opportunities for marketers if they harness big data. It really allows marketers to gain an in-depth understanding of their customers. It enables them to understand exactly what their customers are thinking, what they are engaging with, and ultimately what they want from a product or service.

What is crucial is, as you say, to look at different customer touch points. This is vital when making full use of big data initiatives. Ensuring that data from email, digital advertising and social media are all analysed enables marketers to build up a truly holistic view of the customer and understand them in ways that were, until the advent of big data, impossible.

This in-depth understanding can be used for sophisticated segmentation, and to tailor marketing campaigns to interact with the customer in ways they want, and serve up personalised, targeted content to each recipient. This ultimately can be used to drive sales – which is where return on investment in big data can really be seen.

Thanks, Will Cook
VP at HP Autonomy

over 3 years ago

Avatar-blank-50x50

Ulf Mattsson

I agree. The big promise of big data for marketers is to be able to use all the data we have.

Many organizations have rushed into Big Data focused solely on ROI, and security is an afterthought. There is also a shortage in Big Data skills and an industry-wide shortage in data security personnel, so many organizations don’t even know they are doing anything wrong from a security perspective.

They need help from outside security experts.

Ulf Mattsson, CTO Protegrity

over 3 years ago

Avatar-blank-50x50

Will Cook, VP at Autonomy

Hi Stephanie,

Really enjoyed reading your blog.

I’d add an additional “V” – time-to-Value. Big data (particularly customer communications via social or email) has a short shelf life. It comes in quickly (Velocity) but to be effective, marketers also need to be able to analyse it and derive actionable insight in near real time. This can be particularly challenging when dealing with rich media formats such as audio or video.

I completely agree with your comment that there are plenty of opportunities for marketers if they harness big data. It really allows marketers to gain an in-depth understanding of their customers. It enables them to understand exactly what their customers are thinking, what they are engaging with, and ultimately what they want from a product or service.

What is crucial is, as you say, to look at different customer touch points. This is vital when making full use of big data initiatives. Ensuring that data from email, digital advertising and social media are all analysed enables marketers to build up a truly holistic view of the customer and understand them in ways that were, until the advent of big data, impossible.

This in-depth understanding can be used for sophisticated segmentation, and to tailor marketing campaigns to interact with the customer in ways they want, and serve up personalised, targeted content to each recipient. This ultimately can be used to drive sales – which is where return on investment in big data can really be seen.

Thanks, Will Cook
VP at HP Autonomy

over 3 years ago

Avatar-blank-50x50

Stephanie Miller (@stephanieSAM)

Thanks, Will. Great additional "V" - although I will have to come up with a V word that really means short shelf life or maybe suggests the urgency. Valid doesn't quite do it.

SAM

over 3 years ago

Avatar-blank-50x50

Guy Cuthbert

As Miller quotes, ‘The big promise of big data for marketers is to be able to use all the data we have.’ Too many businesses are rushing to jump on the bandwagon and join the big data hype. But what about the small data that is already in the palm of their hands?

Many organisations struggle to maintain the quality and value of the ‘small data’ that their existing IT systems make available to them every day. It would make sense to learn, implement and benefit from well-defined, but rarely practised data management strategies. To make sense of and gain value from data, businesses must hold the belief that rich, well-organised data enables strategic vision into business operations.

The swiftest and most accessible route into data analysis is the emerging discipline of visual analytics, which utilises our visual perception system and its innate pattern discovery; no-one needs a degree in statistics or mathematics to be an effective visual analyst. The best of the current breed of visual analytics software encourages exploration of data, of all forms and sizes, and enables simple, effective communication of insights discovered to non-technical audiences; the people we are marketing too.

Furthermore, visual analytics is a fantastic enabler to determine the quality of an organisation’s existing data and to set about its improvement and management. From there, organisations can achieve a better understanding of the business and what it truly has to offer its customers. It’s time we start using small data to start big.

Guy Cuthbert,
Managing Director,
Atheon Analytics

over 3 years ago

Stephanie Miller

Stephanie Miller, VP, Member Relations at Direct Marketing Association

Thanks, Guy - great point. I am often shocked to find out how few marketers actually read the reports that they have. Your suggestion that maybe the reports are not digestible and could benefit from data visualization is a good one. A great topic for a follow up column! Thanks.

- Stephanie (@stephanieSAM)

over 3 years ago

Comment
No-profile-pic
Save or Cancel
Daily_pulse_signup_wide

Enjoying this article?

Get more just like this, delivered to your inbox.

Keep up to date with the latest analysis, inspiration and learning from the Econsultancy blog with our free Daily Pulse newsletter. Each weekday, you ll receive a hand-picked digest of the latest and greatest articles, as well as snippets of new market data, best practice guides and trends research.