The definition of data has evolved beyond all recognition, but the root meaning of data which is Latin and means ‘gift’ or ‘that which is given’ throws a brighter light to what the word really means and brings all definitions to the same convergence.
Owing to this fact, it is good to know that what is propelling our cyberspace and economy is not just bytes and numbers but the barter trade of information between internet users and organizations. Typically, a user gifts the organizations information in exchange for services rendered.
Far from how mysterious we think it is, Big Data being talked about only goes to buttress better usage of stats, reporting, and analytics.
It is a combination of structured, semi-structured and unstructured stats collected by organizations that can be mined for information and used in predictive modeling and other advanced analytics applications.
The term can be plainly understood to be a set of tools, methodologies, and techniques for being able to derive new ‘insight’ out of extremely large, complex sample sizes of data.
The term has been characterized by so many factors but majorly, Doug Laney sums its characteristics in 3Vs: VOLUME; referring to the volume of data in our environments, VARIETY; referring to various data types and VELOCITY; referring to the speed at which data is generated.
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Big Data comes with its potentials that make for the possibility of establishing patterns and correlations through the barter trade of information. This, in turn, helps to arrive at and test suppositions which could birth deep insights into consumer needs.
Furthermore, the potentials are glaring in how it can supply organizations with trends analysis, consumer behavior and insights which could drive or aid the modification of marketing campaigns and activities.
It also helps organizations to be better informed to make more strategic decisions and this automatically helps them attain a competitive advantage over others.
The impact of the concept span across organizational operations, customer service, personalized marketing strategies, and profit maximization.
Originally the concept is driving at organizations becoming consumer-centric than business-centric thereby, maximizing profit. It’s a hack into the consumer’s life to know what exactly they desire or prefer and how best to be responsive to those needs.
The need for SMEs in Africa to embrace data for the growth and development of their businesses is high. No doubt, Big Data is the new ‘oil well’!
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