As a business owner in today's modern world, you've probably heard a lot about Big Data in recent years. Maybe you've even started using it to inform your business decisions. But because of the tremendous number of data being generated every day, it's difficult to know if you're really using it effectively.
Don't feel bad about it. If there's agreement on one thing about big data it's that it really doesn't have a specific definition. One of the best explanations on Big Data is given by Josh Dreller, the Director of Market Research at Kenshoo. He describes big data as anything too big to deal with in an Excel spreadsheet.
The opportunity of data being gathered by organizations today is mind-boggling. According to IBM, we now create 2.5 quintillion bytes of data per year. The amount of data that are generating is increasing at such an astounding rate that 90 percent of the world’s data has been created in just last two years.
Now, what in the world are you going to do with that? Data is excellent, but most of us aren't actuaries and we've got businesses to run. What we really need is insight.
Luckily, there are tools that fight all this data to the ground and let you make some sense of it.
Here are five small things you can do with big data:
1. Explore the trends on Google.
Google is one of the 800 pound gorillas in the big data space. It's their objective to arrange the world’s information and make it universally accessible and usable. We all know we can use Google for search, but Google offers other free tools that can transform data into insight.
2. Monitor social media.
Keep tabs on what people are saying about your product, your opponent or other appropriate terms for your business. Every one of them can act as a possibility to engage, respond, , solve a problem or even convert a detractor into a suggestion for your product.
There are many resources you can use to do this. If you benefit a big organization, you might connect an expert device like Adobe Marketing Cloud.
3. Monitor your social graph.
Your personal social graph -- individuals you are linked to on social networks -- is a highly effective resource. If you're intelligent about social, you probably have connections on LinkedIn and maybe, Facebook, who you want to engage with. Perhaps they are potential customers, media connections, blog writers or others those who could be a benefit to your business.
Why would you care? People spend energy time and energy developing content. Most will appreciate if you interact with it, comment on it or share it. This is to be able to enhance relationships. It will also help you comprehend how they think when you're pitching them.
4. Get your website quantified.
Do you ever look at your website traffic reports and wonder, "Who are these people, anyway?" Well, Big Data can help you answer that.
Quantcast has a free tool that allows you to type in your website URL and get a free report that will show you all kind of luscious things about your website visitor. You can see the number of unique visitors to your site, how often they come, their gender, age, education, knowledge, ethnic background, how many of them are on mobile, which places they are arriving from and what other groups they are likely to be interested in.
To get accurate info, you'll need to sign-up to "get quantified" and put a little of rule on your web page. Once you comprehend who are your site visitors, you can focus on them and be more appropriate when you discuss it to them. You might even get a new market opportunity to pursue.
5. Don't just target. Retarget.
Cookies are everywhere. Their ubiquity has led to a complete renovation of how most online advertising is purchased. We used to buy websites, or groups of websites that we expected our focus on were likely to be hanging out on depending on their market or psycho graphic profile. Today, more and more, we buy groups of individuals based on cookie information on a wide range of websites across the internet.
One of the excellent methods you can use is known as re-targeting. You can work with a company like RocketFuel to cookie people when they visit your site and then serve them ads to emphasize them to come back later on. It's an excellent strategy to increase your close rates on people who have "raised their hand" by going to your website.
Of course, they haven't actually raised their hand, so you'll want to be careful not to overexpose them to your ads in the days and weeks to follow. There's a fine line between serving up highly relevant ads and being a creepy stalker. The last thing you want to do is to annoy potential customers, but adding re-targeting to your marketing mix if you're not already is a sure way to lift conversion rates for your online ad buys.