The potential of big data for any business has been talked about for ages – but a new study shows that it is marketing departments within business that are actually making the most of such data as they strive to understand the customer.
The survey, from analysts BARC, showed that a quarter of marketing departments already have big data analysis in use today – a figure that is higher than for any other business department. The survey found that a similar amount (23%) had also already integrated big data analyses into sales. The rewards are huge in terms of both boosting sales and cutting costs with such big data analysis prompting an average 8% increase in sales and a 10% reduction in costs, according to the study.
Big data offers huge opportunities for understanding how to refine and change businesses but it is analysis of the customer that is the biggest driver for the use of big data since by understanding and better predicting their actions businesses can personalise the experience and drive sales.
The survey also showed that big data needs to be a top management priority. The study showed that when it was senior leaders of business who drove big data initiatives the companies are more likely to have integrated them as an integrated part of their business process (61%).
Picture credit: BARC
“We are in an era of digitisation and big data will soon be everywhere,” said Rakesh Harji, UK managing director of Blue Yonder, who sponsored the study. “Only those companies who understand the disruptive power of data and digitisation will survive and thrive in the long term.
“The greater understanding marketing departments now have of their customers is a huge benefit to the organisation and is just the beginning of what big data can do. Other business departments are seeing the rewards and following suit, so soon big data will be in every corner of the business. But, as the survey results show, only when the whole management team are on board and clear and focused in the goals that they want to achieve for the business, will they gain the advantages on offer,” he added.
The survey analysed the views of more than 500 respondents from across the globe with 37% of respondents from Germany, Austria and Switzerland and 22% from North America.
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