Big data providing marketers with enormous potential

By now, executives and IT managers are extremely familiar with the term "big data," as the use of business analytics has surged to the forefront of focus of decision-makers' focus. 

A recent Gartner study revealed that 42 percent of organizations will have invested in big data solutions by the end of 2013. Not only that, but leaders are beginning to understand the effects of the technology better. 

"Organizations have increased their understanding of what big data is and how it could transform the business in novel ways," said Gartner research vice president Doug Laney. "Business and IT executives regularly say that information is one of their company's greatest assets."

One of the ways big data is transforming business processes is with regard to companies' marketing capabilities. Combined with the rise of new technologies like social and mobile devices, marketers have more information at their disposal than ever that allows them to analyze their customers.

Using big data to combat challenges
Through effective data analysis, companies are practicing improved business processes – and that is certainly the case when it comes to advertising. 

Currently, there is a major gap between marketing and sales departments, according to a recent CSO Insights and Lattice Engines survey. 

"Sales organizations have made it clear that they are not getting what they need to be successful in today's environment," said Shashi Upadhyay, CEO of Lattice. "Businesses embracing Big Data are achieving higher levels of success by empowering marketing to deliver a previously unattainable level of insight to sales, focusing them on the opportunities with the greatest revenue potential."

The study found that there is a 70 percent lead generation gap between salespeople and marketers, resulting from a variety of issues. Big data and predictive analysis can solve many of those problems, including:

Lack of real-time information: Nearly half of business representatives polled for the study said that they often can't find important information fast enough during phone call. Big data tools are extremely good at organizing large datasets, and can help pave the way for real-time business intelligence

– Achieving an ROI: As companies continuing upping their revenue targets, many respondents reported having difficulty keeping up with those demands. Big data's predictive capabilities make it ideal for measuring whether or not new product lines are likely to achieve a return on investment. 

– Poor marketing strategies: Marketing was found to be another concern, likely because technologies like social media and mobile devices are forcing them to advertise to new channels. Big data enables representatives to gain a better understanding of their customer bases. 

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