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You don’t need to be a large corporation to make use of Big Data. SMEs are well positioned to put insights to powerful use.
When anyone explores the internet they create a trail of information that describes their preferences and habits. When all that data is combined, it’s called ‘Big Data’, and it’s by no means a modest definition. According to IBM, 2.5 billion gigabytes of data was generated every day in 2012, and by 2020 an anticipated 75 billion internet-ready devices will increase that data production exponentially.
But getting to grips with heaps of consumer data is almost certain to be low on the priority list. But SMEs can analyse small data sets, that won’t eat up valuable resources and time, to make sure they’re operating intelligently and responding to consumer needs. Here are some simple tips – looking at free platforms and tools – to get you started.
If you keep in touch with consumers using email you’re already onto a winner because it’s a key communication tool that’s capturing Big Data.
If not, have no fear – it can be quick and simple to explore. Free platforms, such as MailChimp, will reveal helpful information about your subscribers’ behaviour, such as open rate and click-through.
The average email campaign stats are pretty healthy for a smaller companies (achieving 22.11% open rate with a 3.06% click rate), but the overview metrics are just the start of the story; if one of your subscribers loyally opens emails and frequently clicks on lots of links, there’s an opportunity to convert their interest into a sale.
Mailchimp can process the rest of your mailing list to spot similar activity, so you can create a mailing list that exclusively contains hot leads. You may want to send them targeted conversion emails, with a special offer or VIP access to a service.
Social data isn’t always rooted in numbers, so while pre-packaged metrics – such as likes, or shares – may give you a confidence boost, it doesn’t always give practical insights. For example, if you own a cafe and want to attract a new parent and family market you can look to forums or look for conversations on social media, to find and target your desired audience.
For example, Mumsnet – a parenting advice site with upwards of 70 million page views and over 14 million visits per month – could be used to investigate the family-friendly catering market near you. To search the forum for your specific needs, go to Google and use the shortcut below, followed by the subject you’d like to investigate:
site:www.mumsnet.com/Talk family coffee stroud
It’s full to burst with real life Big Data experiences of parents, revealing where they go presently, what keeps them buying (price points, service or quality), and any pains they have to overcome (room for pushchairs). Look for patterns, and use their experiences to inform a problem-solving strategy so you can sing your sell points from the rooftops on every channel. Social media data will help you manoeuvre into new business opportunities you wouldn’t have spotted from behind a counter.
SMEs shouldn’t feel overwhelmed by Big Data, and instead take advantage of its insights to discover more about current customers and target new business.
"Very easy. Bea Luseni very efficient & knowledgeable."This review was posted by Alan Duffy on the 31st of March 2017
Super helpful and easy to work with
"Recommend this company in a heartbeat - Nicole Borneuf was super easy to talk to, was not pushy in the slightest, very helpful and replied with all my questions very professionally and did all she could to help. I had to deal with a few companies to sort my business energy out, all but Nicole were too pushy for my liking and I refused to follow through with them. Thank Nicole - you are a credit to your company, thank you for making the stressful energy change so easy."This review was posted by Mia Drew on the 29th of March 2017
An Extremely Competent Company
"Switch my business has not only helped my SME secure a good energy deal for the second year running but Jessica swiftly found a alternative supplier for me when I was let down on the day of switching by the new contractual provider I had chosen some 4 months previously. Being suddenly out of contract and without provider is everyone's energy nightmare. Greatest thanks."This review was posted by S McMillan on the 29th of March 2017
Helpful, friendly and we saved lots of money!
"Jessica Purnell was helpful and friendly, she made the whole process easy and simple AND we saved lots of money thanks Jess"This review was posted by Melanie Baker on the 23rd of March 2017
Quick & Easy
"Kabibi was very helpful and the whole process was very efficient. The one small reservation I had was that I was phoned up by Kabibi almost immediately having received my online quote - which wasn't enough time for me to finish reading the quotes! Fortunately she was able to assist me in a greater savings on both Gas & Electricity, and so as long as the switchover is seamless I will remain very happy with the service."This review was posted by Amanda Brown on the 21st of March 2017