Is Data Tangible or Intangible?

Did you know that electronic information is tangible? From the apps you use, the games on your phone, right down to every message you send – all of it appears to invisibly float away and live somewhere far off in the ethers, but actually, most of it will land with a thump in our earthly domain.

Because of our impression that information is invisible, we can end up taking the resources it requires for granted. Data centers or server farms dot the globe, and actually come with considerably large carbon footprints, because of not only the power the require to run them, but also to keep them cool. In the United States Continue reading

Market Research Data Barriers worth Combating

As discussed in previous posts on big data and data overload, an effective data management and analysis plan will make all the difference between actionable insights and information stockpiling.  Data is vital and all businesses depend on it to make the right decisions going forward. However, there comes a time when the data becomes too much and you are faced with data overload.

If you are in market research, you are constantly faced with the challenge of focusing in on the right segments of data. It can be hard to sort through the 2.5 quintillion bytes of data that is created each day by Internet users alone. Therefore it is important that you understand big data barriers.

First, there are three main attributes to describe big data:

  • Volume: The amount of information on the Internet is immense; from people posting links to their favorite blogs to customers writing reviews. This data is freely available for you to turn into valuable information.
  • Velocity: The rate at which data enters the information highway is phenomenal. You have to be constantly updating trends and reevaluating assumptions.
  • Variety: Data comes from many sources and consists of both structured and unstructured data.

If you do not have an effective plan in place to manage and analyze data, it can quickly escalate into data overload. Some common barriers experienced in market research include:

  • Data paralysis: It is easy for a business to be overwhelmed by all the data that they have at their disposal. Without an analytics program, data becomes impossible to act on. The data is left unchecked and being a burden more than a gift.
  • Expense: Efficient software, hardware and human resources are needed to make the best use of data. For some businesses, there might not be enough resources to allow for the proper use of data.
  • Data privacy: You might be able to gather the data, however, you might be concerned about how you can utilize it. Due to the sensitivity of certain types of data, your company may worry about litigation proceedings from the same consumers you are trying to please.
  • Real-time: Data is added to the Internet in fractions of a millisecond. It can be difficult for your business to keep up with the ever changing scope.

Despite the many challenges that come with data, the benefits of having an effective data management and analysis plan pay off. You will gain the visibility into your competitors, marketplace, and consumers–the visibility needed to position your business as a leader in innovation and consumer approval.

The Challenge of Data Overload

The world seems so much bigger today than it ever was.  According to reports, more than 1.2 zettabytes of digital information was created in 2010. The availability and importance of data is increasing at staggering rates; yet, at the same time, it costs billions of dollars to control. Companies that have placed little investment into data analysis resources struggle with data overload–unable to take advantage of the information available.

Overcoming Data Overload

Most companies have no problem admitting to the paralyzing effects of having too much data. Business leaders face major challenges in the decision-making process when data overload exists. In an effort to minimize the caustic effects of data overload, it’s important to define which facts are critical to move the business forward.  Without set parameters around analyzing data, business leaders have no means of knowing what data is valuable and what data can be ignored.

The following suggestions can help make data analysis more manageable:

  • Determine your company’s information needs on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.
  • Select the KPIs that matter most to your business.
  • Identify specific financial drivers  – such as customer satisfaction and loyalty.
  • Make information available in a visually appealing format.
  • Ensure that your analytic tools can leverage all available information.

While these are simple and effective steps to improving how your company utilizes data, they do not replace the need for high quality data analysis tools and professionals.

Is Your Business Ready for Big Data?

Big Data could mean Big Bucks for the companies that know how to gather it and use it. However, since the discovery that big data can help drive up revenue the number of organizations that actually use it are few and far between.

What is Big Data?

As our world becomes more technology driven, large companies have been at the forefront of implementing new technologies and seen data management become an important part of business. High definition video, Tweets, Facebook, tags, SMS and intelligent chips do more than process information and accelerate communication, they also leave a digital trail. This trail, when analyzed properly, can be used to track what consumers consider important.

What Do You Do With Big Data?

This is the key question that many businesses are struggling with. But fear not, the business world has given us the Data Scientist. This new specialist position is not merely an IT guru or analyst, but leaders who forge a collaboration of sorts that combines the creativity of marketing aspects with the science of the numbers to turn out actionable data to drive new marketing strategies.

Why Aren’t More Businesses Using Data Scientists?

Indicative of technology; the idea of Data Scientists has spread fast and created a demand. The number of Data Science experts is not nearly great enough to meet the demands. Mashable reported in the largest-ever global survey of the data science community that:

  • 63% of data science professionals believe demand for data science will outpace the supply of talent over the next five years.
  • Lack of training (32%) and resources (32%) were identified as the two biggest obstacles to Data Science adoption.
  • Only 1/3 of respondents report they are confident in their ability to make business decisions based on new data.
  • 38% of business intelligence analysts and data scientists strongly agree that their company uses data to learn more about customers.

Results suggest that Data Science, as a field is still in its infancy and elusive to many companies. Some of which are oblivious to the growing necessity for Data Scientists.

No Matter the size of your organization, the utilization of Data Scientists could drive a huge boost in your bottom line. Being able to turn your tracking information into actionable data that results in profits is quickly becoming the new frontier of business. Implementing the Data Scientist concept to help streamline your marketing plan will not only generate mere income but it will also change the structure of today’s businesses.