The term "big data" seems ubiquitous these days. It's a big topic of discussion at most conferences, and it strikes me that for all our talk about it, many questions remain. Who needs big data? The short answer is: we all do. But if you find yourself unsure of what it is and how to use it, I have some ideas for you. Think of data as a raw material. Like any other raw material, it needs to be refined, processed, and managed. Just as crude oil doesn't power our cars, raw, unanalyzed data won't propel our businesses forward.
My advice to marketers and publishers: pick your data partners wisely and, to start, be sure to gain a full understanding in these three key areas:
Of course, there are many more data sets to keep in mind, but focusing on these key areas to start should take some of the mystery out of "big data" and help you refine it to the point that it propels your business to new heights. Be specific about the information you will need to make your campaign or project more effective and focus only on the data points that will get you there.
Big Data image on home page via Shutterstock.
Meet Your Favorite ClickZ Contributors
Many of ClickZ's leading expert contributors will be at ClickZ Live, the new online and digital marketing event kicking off in New York (March 31-April 3). Hear from the likes of: Jeremy Hull, Lisa Raehsler, Andrew Goodman, Bryan Eisenberg, Mathew Sweezey, Aaron Kahlow, Stephanie Miller, Simms Jenkins, Jeanne S. Jennings, Dave Hendricks and more!
Larry Allen is SVP, Global Platform Sales for Xaxis. He has responsibility for overseeing solutions for publishers including Xaxis for Publishers, Xaxis Exchange, and Xaxis Marketplace globally.
Larry has extensive experience in digital media, marketing, and business strategy unmatched by most standards. Prior to joining 24/7 Media (which merged with Xaxis in 2014), he held senior management positions at cutting-edge digital media companies such as AOL, Viewpoint, Unicast, Yieldex, Real Media, and TACODA.
Larry also ran his own consulting business where he advised many major media companies such as The New York Times, Meredith, 33Across, and Business Insider. He is a frequent contributor to a number of trade publications, blogs, and industry conferences.
A graduate of Clarion University of Pennsylvania with a degree in Business Management, Larry is based in Xaxis' headquarters in New York City.
Follow him on Twitter at @lawrenceallen2.
March 19, 2014