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Why Your CEO Should Be Awake Every Night Because Of Big Data


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Dilbert is it too late to side with evil

Many believe that Big Data is a hype, a buzzword, something that will pass if we don’t pay attention to it. Although we are at the peak of inflated expectations, Big Data is all but a hype and a buzzword. In fact, if you do not start developing a Big Data strategy within the next few years, your company will not exist anymore in 10-15 years. Big Data is not something you want to be dealt with by your IT department. Big Data is so important, that it better keeps your Board, and especially your CEO, awake every night.

The examples are everywhere: Macy’s is changing the shopping experience thanks to Big Data. Southwest Airlines delivers excellent service because of Big Data. And Coca-Cola uses Big Data to produce the best orange juice year-round. Each of these companies is in different industries, but all of them benefit massively from Big Data. Big Data is for every organisation, small or large multinational and for any industry. Whether it is the fishing industry or thepublishing industry.

As can be understood from these examples, Big Data goes a lot further than using just Business Intelligence tools to create KPI dashboards that can be used. It requires a different corporate culture that is data-driven and information-centric. In addition, Big Data is all about combining and analysing different data sets to create new, real time, insights that can be used for decision-making. An out-of-the-box approach is vital to provide new data-driven solutions for the customers. Developing a Big Data strategy requires the organisation to have a good understanding of what Big Data is, what it entails and what the different possibilities are. Developing a Big Data strategy is only one aspect. Implementing that strategy within your organisation and selling it to the customers (and employees) is a different ball game. It is anything but easy as the statistics show because 55% of Big Data projects fail.

However, those organisations that do manage to implement a Big Data Strategy are doing very well as research has shown that they outperform their peers financially by 20%. Not understanding Big Data or not wanting to move ahead with Big Data is therefore the wrong approach. Yes it is difficult and it involves money, energy and a cultural change, but not doing it will be far more expensive in the long run. Those who still have difficulty to really grasp what Big Data can do for your organisation, please join the Big Data Course or buy my book Think Bigger – Developing a Successful Big Data Strategy for Your Business. It is a small investment that will definitely pay-off in the (near) future.

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Databases have been around for 40+ years. What makes big data different from data?

Data is data is data. Same data, just more of it and a bit more different - if I were a marketer I would be talking Volume and Velocoraptors here

velocoraptor

But the difference with the Big Data movement is now we have the technology to analyze disparate sources at volume and a mindset and the ability to create different interactions. 

So instead of analyzing a customer lifecycle in an airline loyalty program, I can now analyze the lifetime of a single airmile. Roll those up and you get new and more accurate behavioral segments rather than the few buckets that traditional marketers dream up. But that requires analyzing billions of airmiles on a regular basis. Something that the old BI and Data Warehousing industry would have found difficult.

Aha! I get it. Size does matter. Now that machines have so much more capacity.

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