How Is Big Data Changing Digital Marketing?

How has the use of big data impacted digital marketing?


According to one survey, almost 86% of its subjects claim that their organizations either already use big data for their digital marketing, or are considering using it. This particular trend is quite effective in digital marketing since it a) gives a better understanding of customers, b) improves the supply chain, and, c) powers the campaigns and deals with promotions. Still, this is just the tip of the iceberg of what big data has to offer to digital marketers. Here are a few more things you should know about it.

Big data sources

The first thing you need to know is that all the information that you manage to gather from big data comes in six categories.

  • 1.Web Mining: This is a simple process of extracting data from the open web, such as server logs, browser activity, but also documents and page content.
  • 2.Search Information: The next part deals with search information, which does nothing else but studies the behavior of a specific target demographic.
  • 3.Social Media: There is an interesting statistic which claims that 79% of all internet users are on Facebook. By studying the pages they like, the interests they list, and even the comments they are leaving, one can stumble upon an invaluable piece of information.
  • 4.Crowd Sourcing: This particular source is a bit more direct since it works through already formed specific communities, such as forum users, survey participants, etc.
  • 5.Transactional: Of course, not all data that interests you is textual. You also want to know logistic about the transactions of your clients and any relevant information about these activities. We are talking about things like flight reservations, credit card purchases, and even insurance claims.
  • 6.Mobile: Finally, you need to keep in mind that in 2017, mobile users make up the majority of online users. This is why it is vital for any business to dig into these user patterns. Naturally, the data is created by apps, seeing how average mobile users spend 89 percent of their time on mobile devices using them. This is also because most of them run silently in the background even when not used.

Business intelligence software

While having all this data is great on its own, it does not reveal much. Raw data is like a clay that needs to be put into a mold in order to assume a meaningful shape. In other words, you need adequate business analytics software to interpret this data. Ideally, the information you get is displayed in the form of a dashboard, which allows you to fully assess its usefulness for your digital marketing efforts. 

Real-time response

Finally, if you choose a platform that allows you to look at this data in real-time you can react to changes instantaneously. This will provide you with a unique chance to get ready for their next visit, perhaps even plan a better approach that will drastically improve your website. This can be things like email retargeting, avoiding sign-in barriers, or a ‘save for later’ button.


Over a century ago, John Wanamaker said that although one-half of all the money he spends on marketing goes to waste he can never know which part. Luckily, we have come a long way since then. Today, with modern BI software paired with big data fuels our digital marketing. We can then make sure that every dollar we invest gives us the best possible return. Because of this, it would be safe to say that big data is revolutionizing digital marketing.


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