"Big Data" and "Social Media" – The Best of Both Worlds - ignore at your own peril
There are two phrases that you just can’t escape in the online marketing world of today – “big data” and “social media”. It seems that everywhere we turn someone is telling is of the importance of big data or social media. As powerful as these two are individually, combined, they are far more powerful.
Before we get into the discussion about the two terms and what they mean to business, lets review what we actually mean when we refer to them. Big data refers to a collection of data that is often so large it is difficult to process using traditional or manual data processing applications.
The benefit of a data set that is so large that is has the ability to spot real time trends on a larger scale that you might miss or not be able to recognize when analyzing smaller data sets. As an example, companies and marketing teams today could use "big data" sets to identify regional trends that they wouldn’t be able to see if looking at a small set taken from a specific location within that region.
Social media refers to interaction among people and companies in which they share, exchange, and/or create information in virtual and online communities and networks (Web 2). Contrary to what many might believe, social media does not only consist of Twitter or Facebook although these platforms do form a part of this "Social Media". Social media today should be a part of the basis in all business plans and across sales strategies, marketing, engineering, etc. It is vitally important that you know the unique benefits of each individual social platform works so you can use maximise the returns in the most efficient way.
When looking at a strategy for the most efficient way to combine big data and social media, a few guidelines should be considered - recognize, react, and repeat. Firstly, you need to look for and recognize any patterns that may become apparent. Big data will allow you to expose high level patterns and trends. Secondly, you will want to react to these outcomes. Did you notice an increase in online chatter around a specific location or products or services? These can be seen as trending patterns, be sure to use social media channels to directly reach out to them using the trigger. Thirdly , you will want to be able to replicate or repeat this successes. After recognizing a pattern, try a few different approaches in your strategy so you can compare the success of each one.
While big data and social media are not new concepts, ignoring them in today's markets will be at your own risk, so learn more about them today and look at the requirements to implement a successful "Big Data and Social Media" strategy.

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