What is Big Data and why should marketers care?
When technologist Mitchell Kapor first uttered his famous line, “Getting information off the Internet is like taking a drink from a fire hydrant,” it was before most marketers were even thinking about Big Data. Now that the landscape has changed, his words are truer than ever. There’s a massive amount of information out there, especially when it comes to data about what, when, how and why your clients are buying. But luckily, getting that information has never been easier, and it’s vital for your business to manage the flow and put that data to use.
More than a buzzword
In a nutshell, “Big Data” refers to the collection, storage and analysis of large amounts of unstructured data. Most companies already collect customer and product information. But not all marketers know how to maximize it, especially as it’s often associated with B2C marketing. However, even for B2B, it’s a pile of gold just growing bigger.
There are a number of profitable ways marketers have applied Big Data:
- Tracking the sales process – With the right data, you can know where your prospects are in the purchasing pipeline and speak to them with relevant language.
- Understanding the strengths and weaknesses in your sales funnel – Are prospects consistently getting stuck at one point in the sales process, or, alternatively, is there a certain document they see that seems to cinch the deal? By knowing what parts of the sales process are taking longer than others, you can adjust your marketing and guide your sales team for better results.
- Performance – US Xpress, a US-based logistics company, tracked the minute details of their trucks’ activities, such as fuel consumption, transit time and even tire pressure, to help manage and improve their fleet’s performance.
These examples are just the tip of the iceberg for how you can apply Big Data to your marketing operations. Stay tuned for our next post where we explain how you can reap the benefits of data-driven marketing.
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