20 Oct The How of Big Data Analytics Marketing
We’ve never had this much data at our fingertips, which means businesses can gather marketing insight like never before. You may have heard the phrase ‘Big Data Analytics’ thrown around, but the reality is that many companies are still not utilising the information they have to make money or become more cost effective.
Data alone means nothing, of course – it’s what you do with it that matters. This is where big data analytics comes in, the tool to better understanding your market.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The essence of big data marketing is identifying what your target demographic wants, and using it to make sure that’s exactly what your company delivers. It takes the guesswork out of traditional marketing techniques and can help you develop strategies that are unique to your brand, using customer details, sales or any other form of data.
Beyond the simple supply and demand use, it can help companies work out the best price they can charge, locate their main customer base and make informed decisions about new marketing strategies.
This can include identifying something your customer base wants, but no competitor provides. One of the best recent examples of big data marketing in action is when Netflix trawled through their audience viewing figures to create the ‘perfect’ show. They analysed the viewing habits of their 83.18 million worldwide customers; what they watched, how long they watched it for and what ratings they left. They discovered a hunger in the market for a US political drama. Enter ‘House of Cards’, which was an international runaway success.
Not everybody is Netflix, and on a smaller level data marketing can mean analysing the click-through-rate (CTR) of your posts on social media to find out how your audience are engaging with content. It can also involve simply identifying that more of a certain product sold in a particular part of the country, or looking at employment and housing data to keep track of your customer’s income. As such, the possibilities are almost endless.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
One common misconception is that big data will cost big money, which isn’t always the case.
Tracking link clicks through services like Google Analytics is free, while extracting customer information can simply involve analysing existing company sales information, providing it is well maintained. Other useful information, such as census or employment data, is publicly available online. With so much data at hand, the cost often lies not with collecting the information, but in analysing it.
If you want to go deeper, however, this will require some financial investment. Hadoop (or its most popular distribution Cloudera) is seen as one of the simplest solutions for handling large data sets, and will store and process information for you. Their systems, including hardware and software, will cost around £815 ($1,000) per terabyte. Other competitors exist, such as HortonWorks, MapR and more – all with their own unique selling points.
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