The big data addiction

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By Joe Livingstone

There is every chance you and I are addicted to data. Can’t live without it, in fact.

Ironically, I can't get hold of the data that proves your habit directly, and, addicted as I probably am, that makes me a little mad. The hard truth is, we live in an era where much of what we consider essential to our way of life depends on data-driven apps such as Google Maps, Citymapper and Fitbit. We are slave to the alarm clock, the calendar reminder and Netflix’s recommended movies. More data is submitted by us, collected about us, then fed back to us (and others) than ever before.

Sure, we could live without it, but would our lives be so richly personalised and convenient? I think not.

As marketers, we occupy a special category of addiction. Our need for data is driven by two unique urges:

  1. The need to measure our success
  2. To use what we've learned to do even better next time

Human behavioural data we trade as a precious commodity must be mined and refined to give us an unrivalled view of our marketing performance. It doesn’t come pre-prepared like consumer nutritional information on the sleeve of a ready meal. Highly targeted omnichannel activities demand custom-built measurement plans, so we can design tracking that accurately captures the complex patterns of human behaviours and sentiments that reveal our successes and failures. Mining and refining metrics we define as important is an essential process to surface the right data and make it intelligible as insights.

At Axonn, data and our data analysts are an integral part of the entire process of creating and defining both campaigns and ongoing marketing strategies for our clients. Our measurement plans evolve alongside and as part of our creative, planning and campaign implementation because we understand the need to treat data like a precious commodity  - an indicator of success on the one hand, revealing opportunities to engage an audience better in the future on the other.

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