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Brands may be overwhelmed by market research volumes

AUGUST 26, 2011 – Sometimes, even when you build it, they won’t come. According to The CMO Site, there are huge stockpiles of big data and market research available to brands, but few are actually using much of the consumer information to develop and “refine” their marketing efforts.

Part of the problem may be that brands are overwhelmed by how much market insight they have to choose from. The source reports that in 2004, global monthly internet traffic was at 1 billion gigabytes – or 1 exabyte. By March 2010, that number surpassed 21 exabytes a month, and internet video alone will account for 18 exabytes a month in 2012, the source says.

Ellis Booker, a marketing and technology journalist quoted by the source, said that a continuing challenge for brands “is lacking a culture of measurement. Marketers and mangers in general still navigate by gut, most of the time.” But there are a few companies that have been able to navigate big data. Best Buy has started setting up individual profiles in order to categorize its customers. From there, it sends out personalized marketing emails, the website reports.

Companies in the Asia-Pacific region, such as the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, are tackling big data management by using software to store, sort through and analyze their information. ICBC is one of the biggest banks in the world, processing 200 million transactions per day, and said it uses the technology to inform its business decisions, mitigate risk and improve customer relationships.

“The era of ‘Big Data’ has arrived: multi-petabyte data warehouses, social media interactions, real-time sensory data feeds, geospatial information and other new data sources are presenting organizations with a range of challenges, but also significant opportunities,” stated Philip Carter, the associate vice president of IDC Asia/Pacific.

Carter predicted that in the future, CIOs will begin integrating these technologies in order to shift through the information in the massive data sets, since current databases and tech infrastructures are not up to the job. When that happens, he said, “It will become clear that the real value will be derived from the high-end analytics that can be performed on the increasing volumes, velocity and variety of data that organizations are generating.”