Insight transforms data into rocket fuel

Michael Nutley is right to say that the understanding of data is vital to any modern marketer (MW 23 June). There isn’t a company out there that doesn’t claim to have data but far rarer is someone explaining what that data means.

Data on its own has little value. It may indeed be the new oil, but like oil, its true value only comes from being refined. Insight turns data into rocket fuel. The majority of data warehouses are built only to house information not access and analyse it in a nanosecond and that’s why most fail. Brands can’t just buy data and assume the problem is solved. Some use third-party sources to look up to speed, but that only means marketers risk paying for something that provides no real benefit.

We’ve been working with data for more than a decade, but as we move into video and beyond, we still view ourselves as being in a learning environment constantly refining what we do to ensure our ongoing effectiveness.

We’ve learned that extracting insight from the data is essential. A data warehouse doesn’t spot that a user researching diets and browsing for swimwear may also be signaling an intention to book a holiday. It is when data is shared and analysed correctly that campaigns can deliver most effectively.

Ian Dowds
Vice-president UK, Specific Media

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