Why is Big Data Important to Businesses? - dummies

Why is Big Data Important to Businesses?

By Jason Williamson

A good example of big data usage is social media analytics, which enable companies to understand unsolicited public opinion about marketing initiatives, brands, products, and services in Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Yelp, blogs, and other external sources where consumers post their opinions in public forums.

Social media analytics has become not only a leading enterprise business driver, but also a channel from which companies can get reliable feedback. Multichannel customer sentiment and experience has evolved to be a primary mechanism for understanding and influencing public opinion. Social media forces companies to be led by consumers.

Industries that have stiff competition listen carefully to customers — and if they don’t, they face loss of revenue or eventual death. Social media forces bad businesses out of business or into a better business service model. Companies are paying attention to the flow of information from external and internal sources. Although some industries are apparently deaf to consumers, it will change with the fullness of time.

Here are some of the marketing initiatives that chief marketing officers have begun to ask for:

  • Social media chatter: Determine who is saying what about your brand and/or company. Brand sentiment analysis provides you with feedback you can’t get from polls or surveys. What are consumers and the industry saying about your product?

  • Comparative analysis: Compare your products, brands, or organizations to their competition. How do your company and products compare against your competition? What is the public saying in real time?

  • Marketing analytics: Provide your customers with real-time information about the buzz or sentiment of your products.

  • Target marketing: Dissect social media chatter about your subject from multiple sources in real-time and identify social media audiences for proactive marketing campaigns. For example, you may want to target your customers with special offers and new product launches.

  • Customer experience: Mitigate issues and complaints before they go viral. Have you ever tweeted a bad experience at a restaurant or hotel and gotten a quick response from the company? Businesses can do a good job of managing the customer experience by getting ahead of negative information on social media. Big data tools can automatically process consumer feelings and prompt a response by companies.