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Big Data: Turn Numbers to Words; Turn those Words into Customers

Say good riddance to the days of Big Data being limited exclusively to the information technology and spread sheet management domains. Innovative companies and organizations are finally harvesting valuable business intelligence by putting Big Data in the hands of marketing and communications specialists who transform analytics into bigger reach with increased profits.

You are allowing priceless information to wither away untapped and undervalued if your business or organization hasn’t welcomed the chief marketing officer and director of communications to the Big Data revolution. Unleash your operation’s organic growth potential by sharing with your pitch teams information accumulated in-house and by collecting and filtering a motherload of available outside information resources.

It’s simple logic that a CMO must understand the relationship between customer and product in order to target what it is you sell to whom, but it requires sharing timely analysis of sales records and customer demographics, behavior and sentiment. The enlightened CMO has the capacity to move a sales team beyond predictive analysis into outright identification of new customers by leveraging internal web analytics, external social media channels and other open source data sets, but don’t ignore the human intelligence: talk with your people who talk to the marketplace.

A forward-looking market analysis strategy takes unstructured data, like Twitter and Facebook posts and the comment fields on product reviews and related industry websites, and couples it with structured data, including names, addresses, and phone numbers. You end up creating a phonebook on steroids.

Apply the same logic to your communications shop and the result is a strong message that enhances your brand and tells your story to a responsive audience. Sharing all available data and knowledge tools with your communications guru will produce concise sales support tools, like compelling website content, talking points, cover letters and pitch decks. Your sales team will love you for it.

For too long internal data has been treated like a protected commodity, kept mostly by IT techs at midsized companies, or chief information officers and other upper echelon managers at larger operations. The term Big Data might be mentioned in meetings or memos, but the deep dives into the analytics remain proprietary and guarded. To what end? Maybe a dead end.

It’s even worse at small businesses, where culling data is often dismissed as a luxury. A small business owner might have time to glance at the analytics, but is likely to hand it off to an assistant who barely has time to juggle schedules, sort mail, answer phones, order staples and clean out the refrigerator. Small businesses are the economic engine of the New Economy, yet it’s tragic how so many fail to realize how affordable it is to outsource predictive analytics, strategic communications and marketing. Done right, the return on investment far exceeds the terms of a contract.

No matter the size of an operation this formula will produce actionable strategic planning:

Well-Sourced Human Intelligence + Research & Data + Analysis = Smart Solutions.

Most executives and managers will then discover the by-product of sharing Big Data is team-building and a results-driven synergy that will grow a business or organization. That is the epitome of a win-win situation.

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