Make it BIG with Big Data -
7 Steps to making Big Data work for your Business

Everyone seems to be making it big with Big Data. Back in 2012, a McKinsey & Company article stated that "the promise of Big Data is so seductive that it often sends people scrambling after ever more petabytes or exabytes in the hopes of unearthing that golden insight that will allow them to grow and beat the competition."

In today's data-centric world, Big Data is big business. Companies invest millions in collecting, processing, and analyzing as much data as they can with tools and technologies such as artificial intelligence and predictive analytics.

Is Big Data actually making the difference? Is your competition—big or small—already down the road and out of sight? Fortunately for you, the answer is "No"!

The Humbling Reality

Despite the hype, most businesses are battling to get their Big Data initiatives off the ground. One of the most alarming results of the NewVantage Partners' 2019 Big Data and AI Executive Survey is that the percentage of Fortune 1000 and industry-leading organizations identifying themselves as data-driven has declined over the past three years—from 37% in 2017 to only 31% in 2019. Executives cited cultural challenges—alignment, agility, and resistance—as being the primary reason for holding up their Big Data initiatives. Only 5% blamed technology as the roadblock.

Supporting these findings, survey participants admitted that:

72% of them have yet to forge a data culture

69% have not created a data-driven organization

53% do not treat data as a business asset

52% are not competing at the data and analytics level

If large enterprises have yet to make Big Data work for them, what chance do you have as a small business? The very opposite is true. You're smaller and have less data. If you do it right, you can get ahead of the game.

7 steps to make Big Data work for your business

The following recommendations can help you develop and execute the Big Data strategy that's right for your business:

1. Understand Big Data and its potential for your Business

Big data can't tell you everything about your business, but it can tell you a lot. Data from your website can tell you where visitors come from, what links they clicked on and in what order, what interested them the most, and what they purchased. Knowing these details offers real insight into possibilities for upselling and cross-selling.

2. Identify the Big Data opportunity for your Business

Don't view Big Data as data; view it as potential value. Use it to visualize your customers, their desires, and their needs. Use it to get to know them at a deeper level. Leverage it to create a more intimate relationship. Identify patterns and trends among your customers and across your industry to predict future demand. Create initiatives and targeted marketing campaigns designed to give your customers what they "want"—not what they "wanted."

3. Make Big Data a priority

Geoffrey Moore said that "Without big data, you are blind and deaf and in the middle of a freeway." Use Big Data to future-proof your business. If you don't, your rivals may get the jump on you. Make time to follow these steps. You'll gain a massive advantage over those who don't.

4. Build a business case and get the support of your partner or team

Fight the misconception that Big Data is just for big business. It's not! It's true they have more money and resources, but that doesn't make it any less of a challenge. If you start small and do it right, you'll be able to grow exponentially with the right tools and assistance.

5. Invest in Big Data solutions for small business

Many online SaaS tools enable small businesses to overcome in-house technical limitations and realize the same benefits of Big Data analytics that large enterprises enjoy. In our next blog, we'll have a look at some of the tools available to help deliver your desired results.

6. Use data to justify decision-making

Data analysis helps determine patterns of behavior, but it doesn't tell you why. Making assumptions as to why consumers act a certain way are only guesses and not a reliable basis for determining the best solution to address a problem. The only way to discover the answers is by engaging in qualitative research such as focus groups, interviews, and observation. Follow the path, and you'll reach your goal!

7. Get the help you need to develop a Big Data strategy and implement the tools you need

You could do it alone, but it's likely to take longer and cost more. We're here to help you navigate the complex world of Big Data and analytics. Contact us to find out how you can leverage your Big Data to be Small but Smart! Get started with Emergotech today!

April 15th, 2019 - 5 min read

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