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Survey Reveals Marketers Are Struggling to Handle Big Data

January 18, 2013
NEWTON, MA—Jan. 18, 2013—Conversational marketing technology provider Neolane Inc. announced the results of a survey it conducted in partnership with The Direct Marketing Assn. (DMA). Conducted in the third quarter of 2012, the more than 250 respondents to the survey spanned mid- and executive-level marketers in a wide range of industries.

The key finding is that many markers are struggling with managing big data and must implement changes to make better use of their customer information. Overall, many are ill-equipped to handle the influx of growing data and are behind in planning for tremendous growth.

Sixty percent of those surveyed noted that they do not currently have or are unsure if their companies have a specific strategy for handling the challenges of big data. More than half of respondents indicated that they are augmenting their marketing team and investing in new technology to handle the influx of customer data. Additionally, 81 percent of those surveyed feel that they are either somewhat or not very prepared when it comes to the new rules and regulations of marketing-data governance.

Marketers Embrace SoLoMo

Although marketers are struggling with managing Big Data and meeting new regulations, the survey findings indicate that they are embracing “SoLoMo” (social, local, mobile) marketing strategies that help generate new data:

• 62 percent of marketers leverage social media profile data (e.g., profile ID, likes, interests), while 62 percent utilize social media transactions including wall posts, shares and comments in online campaigns.

• Opportunity still exists for marketers in mobile, specifically in accessing location-based data in mobile campaigns as only 23 percent of survey respondents noted they are currently using this data.

• Overall, 50 percent of marketing departments say that skill sets are changing, especially with the growth of these social and mobile channels. Therefore, they are considering employing data scientists to handle the influx of customer data.

“It is clear that our increasingly data-driven world is reshaping how marketers engage consumers,” said Linda A. Woolley, DMA’s acting president and CEO. “However, it is also clear that when it comes to the new rules and regulations of marketing data governance—most organizations simply are not prepared.

“DMA is the one source for the most current information about what is happening on the legislative and regulatory front. We provide advice and counsel to members, along with the most effective information and guidance on best practices, data governance and compliance,” Woolley added.
 

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