Big Data refers to the collection of huge amounts of data by companies who go on to analyse and use that data to help with marketing. 

Every time we instigate a Google search, use social media or even use a mobile phone we leave a data trail and it is this data which is so valuable to companies and organisations wanting our business.

In today’s blog, we discuss Big Data, and what he may mean for you.

What is Big Data?

The term Big Data is very appropriate as the amount of data collected is too large to be dealt with using regular data-processing software and the quality of the analysis is crucial to the effectiveness of the information being produced.

Big Data is typically collected by companies or organisations from customers, members and staff. However social media is fast becoming a useful source of data for companies eager to predict future opportunities with relative confidence. 

There are two types of a data stream - 'structured' and 'unstructured'. The first, 'structured' data, is relatively easy to collect and analyse as it typically comes web traffic and store receipts. The second type of data is classed as 'unstructured' and comes in the form of Tweets or Facebook posts. It is more difficult to analyse but very useful when it comes to building accurate customer profiles.

Companies use information gained from the analysis of Big Data to help them make solid decisions based on data rather than simply relying on guesswork. Big data can help companies predict upcoming trends, patterns and fashions allowing them to stay one step ahead of the competition. Big Data can also be useful to help reduce waste and improve efficiency within an organisation. 

However, the main use of Big Data is to help companies improve their marketing. Big Data can help companies find out exactly what customers want and need and this is a vital tool for any business aiming for success. 

Most people are happy to allow companies access to their data in return for services and products which may make their lives easier. Ironically, only 0.5% of all the data collected is ever analysed.

 It is worth noting that companies using Big Data effectively have found that it has a major positive impact on income.