Saturday, May 9, 2015

CMOs: 3 steps to implement Big Data road map

Big Data helps to bring excellent customer experience that not only improves company’s performance but also reduces costs and boosts profits. It facilitates marketers to get tasks done more effectively and efficiently. However, many marketing managers face the challenge of capturing, integrating and analyzing Big Data when carrying out the practice into daily work. As a Northwestern Medill Integrated Marketing Communication graduate student, I have found two articles closely related to the topic: the benefits of Big Data, and the current challenges of implementing Big Data into practice.

eMarketer’s article “Big Data Helps Reveal Consumer Behavior” indicated that more and more companies began to see the positive returns of their investment on Big Data in various areas. According to the survey conducted by Forbes Insights and Rocket Fuel, among US agencies and brand managers, 85% indicated that big data helped to yield more than half of marketing initiatives regarding to increasing insights into consumer behavior. It helped the company to yield improvement in sales, sigh-ups, registrations, ROI and customer satisfaction. Both advertising agency and marketers recognized benefits of developing insights into customer experiences, identifying products customers wanted, and establishing the corresponding strategy.


According to Kevin Geraghty in his article “The CMO’s Guide to Bid Data” Big data allowed marketers to create a highly effective marketing program that can connect with your customers closer and beat your competitors. It enabled marketers to retain the customer, identify new customers, reveal new marketing opportunities, driving profitable advertising, and measure ROI. However, the author also argued that when implementing the big data into work, the company was facing some challenges such as developing efficient infrastructure that supports big data and identifying ways to connect disparate data together. It’s important for marketers to consider those problems when approaching the process.''

Based on the insights in my research, here are 3 efficient and effective ways for CMO to implement Big Data into practice.

1.     Develop Your Team - Appoint an experienced data scientist in charge of the data analysis.
2.     Aggressively Collect Data - Marketers need to collect data from both inside and outside of the company.
3.     Develop Insights - Find the right technologies and software to clean up the unstructured data to fine insights.

In order to deliver great experience, marketing managers need to find the right person with the right message and product at the right time in the right place. Machine-generated data, personal productively applications’ data, and mixed-media data all help markets to understand the increasingly complex customer decisions journeys and improve the experience during each touch-points to enhance the interactions with the company. It’s important for marketers to leverage big data to understand your customers and expand your business.

Yilun Cao is currently a master student major in Integrated Marketing Communication at theNorthwestern University. She is now studying marketing analytics and brand strategy. She has earned Bachelor’s Degree in Communication at the University of Washington. Yilun can be reached by Twitter @yilun_cao.

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