Technology research firm Gartner has increased its forecast for worldwide IT spending in 2013 to $3.7 trillion.1 According to the DMA, global advertising expenditures will grow 4.7% to $480 billion in 2012. Both spending projections will be largely driven by Big Data initiatives.
Increased IT and marketing spending on Big Data will likely be invested in staffing to gain business value from the ever-building volumes of customer data. As technologists, analysts and marketers, we have plenty of data, but we’re not very good at analyzing the data and reporting on the insights, trends and best next actions. In short, the business value is not yet rising up from the abundance of data.
One executive surveyed reported a need to “build skills to make use of the data.” Another concurred by stating they must “manage unstructured data and get automated value from it.”
“Many of our clients gain business insight by centralizing the data analytics teams to develop best practices and consistent reporting across the enterprise,” said Pitney Bowes Software President John O’Hara. “In addition, organizations should resist the temptation to continue one-off customer data exercises for each marketing campaign. By repeating like data analytics exercises over time, brands create relevant conversations and long-lasting relationships with their most lucrative clients and consumers.”
Pitney Bowes recommends the following best practices for strategic planning around data and spending:
- Demonstrate the business value of every data project or exercise to senior executives.
- Focus spending on staffing with advanced analytics and reporting skills.
- Think about whether centralizing data, data management, and/or data analytics will help deliver business value.
- Create and nurture the discipline of repeating like data analytics exercises over time to measure changes in business results and client or consumer behavior over time.