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Marketers and Big Data: Barriers, Budgets, and Opportunities

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Half of marketers are enthusiastic about the role of Big Data in marketing, and another 31% are cautiously optimistic, according to a recent report from Infogroup Targeting Solutions.

The survey of 370 marketers who attended the DMA Annual Conference and Exhibition found 14% are uncertain about the role of Big Data, 3% are tepid regarding it, and just 1% are disillusioned.

However, whether an organization has already invested in Big Data has a significant impact on an individual marketer's outlook: Among those whose companies haven't yet taken the plunge, 22% are uncertain about Big Data’s role in the marketing industry and only 39% are enthusiastic.

Conversely, those who have already started investing in Big Data have few reservations: 60% are enthusiastic, 30% are cautiously optimistic, and only 8% are uncertain.

Below, additional key findings from the report.

Big Data Budgets

  • 62% of marketers surveyed say their Big Data budget will increase in 2014.
  • 67% of marketers who have already made Big Data investments expect to see increased budgets this year, compared with 57% of marketers who haven’t yet made investments.
  • 66% of those already seeing ROI expect their budgets to increase in 2014, compared with 60% for those not seeing ROI yet.

Barriers to Implementation

  • When asked about barriers in implementing Big Data, 35% of respondents blamed budget limitations for lack of success.
  • A lack of quality data was the second most cited barrier (27% of respondents), followed by limited tools and technology (25%).

2014 vs. 2013

Some 73% of marketers surveyed say improving data analytics will be a top priority in 2014, compared with 38% who cited analysis as a top priority in 2013.

About the research: The report was based on data from a survey of 370 marketers at the 2013 Direct Marketing Association Annual Conference in Chicago. The survey was administered in-person, on tablet devices, October 14-17.

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Ayaz Nanji is an independent digital strategist and a co-founder of ICW Content, a marketing agency specializing in content creation for brands and businesses. He is also a research writer for MarketingProfs. He has worked for Google/YouTube, the Travel Channel, AOL, and the New York Times.

LinkedIn: Ayaz Nanji

Twitter: @ayaznanji

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  • by Rene Y. Wed Feb 5, 2014 via web

    I wish this article defined "Big Data" in terms of what it means to marketing because it sounds really interesting but I don't know what it is or what I'm missing out on. Here's what I found on Wikipedia:

    Big data is difficult to work with using most relational database management systems and desktop statistics and visualization packages, requiring instead "massively parallel software running on tens, hundreds, or even thousands of servers".

    Is this what we're talking about? What do you get out of it? Do only Fortune 500 companies apply? Because I think my IT department would be pissed if I took over all of their servers.

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