Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Is Smart Data Rendering Big Data Obsolete?

smart data, big data, survey, predictive analytics

The problem with buzzwords is that they become too marketable, and are overused to the point of general annoyance. Count the term “Big Data” amongst these terms that have run the gamut, from symbolizing exciting possibilities to blanket term used to define anything and everything.

But regardless of the fact that we've all heard the term used dozens of times over the past year, Big Data does offer insight that we haven't been privy to before. But just because there is now tons of information available, that doesn't mean that all of the information provides actionable insight. 
"Marketers have access to lots of data—got it. However, Big Data in and of itself doesn't sell more products or services, or make high-value prospects aware of your brand. Big Data is merely the pool in which we swim to target and generate results. Smart data is the spear gun—this is where we need to focus." - Scott Fasser, HackerAgency
Where as Big Data is a blanket term used to refer to an ocean of data available to those with the right tools, Smart Data refers to the ways we analyze the data to make sense of it.

Big Data vs. Smart Data 

If Big Data is the information available regarding consumer behaviors, then Smart Data is a deeper investigation into the underlying rationale consumers use during their purchasing experience. Furthermore, Smart Data helps to predict repetition of these behaviors, allowing for them to be better targeted by businesses. To be clear: Big Data is not irrelevant; the information that can be accessed can be invaluable to a business’s marketing strategy. Where Smart Data trumps Big Data, however, is that it makes data digestible, meaning that we can focus on analyzing data, as opposed to looking for it.

Predictive Analytics

Looking forward to the rest of 2015 (and beyond), it is becoming abundantly clear that market researchers need to focus more on predictive analytics than on Big Data, if anything, for it’s far more relevant information. Being able to use data from the past to predict the future is far more valuable to market researchers than having to sort through data that might contain actionable information for further study.

While it may seem as if the buzz around Big Data has run its course, really, it’s just emblematic of the evolution of a market research strategy. Having all that data available was new and exciting, and the term “Big Data,” itself was quite marketable. But it is clear that using Smart Data and predictive analysis—two peas in a pod—is far more efficient and cost-effective than relying on Big Data as the focal point of a company’s marketing efforts.

The Smart Data Advantage

Turning complex data into something that actually makes sense allows you to take seemingly meaningless numbers into actionable insights. Smart Data is information that has been extracted by super intelligent algorithms and in the process identifies peaks and downturns in sales. The advantage? If you extracting this type of information without the added layer of intelligence there is actually little to no value—that’s the advantage of smart data.

By now, you might be wondering how you can use Smart Data to your benefit. Our enterprise research platform offers you the best ways to collect, extract, and predict behaviors so you can build better products and services. Sign up for a free trial today!

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