Getting Marketers Up to Speed with Big Data

Marketing | Sectors   |   
Published March 21, 2014   |   
Scott K. Wilder

That alarm marketers are hearing is a wake up call from big data. It’s telling marketers that they need to be more metrics driven, more technically savvy and more process oriented. At the top of the food chain, CMOs are taking on some of the responsibilities that traditionally belonged to CIOs. And at the middle management level, marketers are required to be more technical and metrics oriented.

Gone are the days of fishing for eyeballs or operating based on one’s gut instinct. It is no longer acceptable to just look at demographics or psychographics or just count eyeballs. Instead, marketers need to focus on the numbers — people’s tribes, their behaviors, their interests, their online behavior — both in terms of surfing the website or a mobile app, or transacting with a page or shopping cart.

But most marketers feel unprepared for the incoming big data wave: they lack resources, lack data know-how and don’t know how to get started.

According to a study from The Economist Intelligence Unit, only 24 percent of marketers use data for actionable marketing insight. Almost 50 percent of marketers in that same study cited a lack of capacity to analyze big data. Some companies are increasing their budgets for big data analytics, but there’s still no road map for getting marketers up to speed.

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