I jokingly tell colleagues in the marketing world, that you can’t throw a professional marketer down a flight of stairs these days without the words “big data” tumbling out of their pockets.
There’s no need to benchmark brands against their competencies with big data because, quite frankly, most brands don’t even have a proper definition for what big data means. Plus, even if they did, there are but a small, few brands who have the technical and strategic capabilities to truly benefit from it.
On top of that, most brands are still incredibly weak at leveraging their current data sets to improve outcomes in a faster, more efficient, way. Translated: you have brands worrying about big data, when they’re still pretty sucky at small data.
That doesn’t diminish big data’s ever-growing importance or its pending dominance, but it does take a lot of the steam out of the shiny bright object syndrome engines that we’re all faced with these days. So, while some media pundits dive on big data like it’s a Superbowl football, you will also find many people looking to see what’s next.
What if what’s next is not about bigger sets of data?
What makes big data work is the lack of human intervention. It is the ability for technology to merge data sets normally inaccessible to a human being’s capabilities, and run it with a velocity that no human being could ever do.
The output of this should be some kind of unique insight or new spin on the information that would be almost unimaginable for a human being to uncover and develop.
It takes a massive amount of automation for this technology to be feasible.