Do you think that your company is too small to benefit from the world of Big Data? Yes, “Big Data” is a buzzword that can refer to a lot of things in the “cloud”, (yet another buzzword). However, there are tons of ways that even the smallest of companies can benefit from the advances made in the world of Big Data, even without hiring a massive IT firm to help out.

Existing Customer Data

Did you know that your company is already in the business of Big Data? Sure, it might not be on the same scale as GE or Google, but locked away in your company’s records are contact details, purchasing habits and partial customer profiles on almost every client you’ve ever worked with. This is great news.

Now you can put this information to good use. By taking your client’s history (data) and combining it with other customer history (data), you can begin to analyze purchasing trends (Big Data). You have the keys to the world of Big Data sitting in your filing cabinet. Or, if you’re lucky, these records are digital, preferably in a program like Microsoft Excel.

Yes, Social Media is Big Data

So you’re excited to tear through those filing cabinets. Well, let’s hold off for a minute and consider one of your company’s most comprehensive forms of Big Data. This valuable resource costs pennies on the dollar compared to the hiring of research/analysis firms to perform market analysis on your area.

(If your company doesn’t have a Facebook presence, stop reading and go fix that now.)

If you haven’t taken the ten minutes required to make a free Facebook page for your business, then chances are you’re in serious trouble. The majority of your customers use Facebook, Twitter and Google+ at least two times a week; some as many as once every 15 minutes. If your company isn’t part of the conversation, then you’re leaving room for your competitors to jump into the fray.

Make the jump into the world of social media and your marketing department (for some of you that means that guy or gal in the mirror) will thank you. Not only because additional prospects will be exposed to your brand, but you’ll be able to take advantage of the Facebook “audience analysis” tools mentioned above.

These tools will allow you to learn about the Facebook users who share, comment or view your content; without providing personally identifiable information. The aggregate information can include things like age, sex, interests, and socio-economic status. This will allow you to analyze whether your content is reaching your target audience.

Adjust your approach to marketing, or tailor your service to these new end users. Just don’t forget about your existing customers; it’s almost never a good idea to sacrifice current customers for new clients. All of this new information, along with the tools necessary to fatten your bottom line, are brought to you by the world of Big Data. See, it isn’t so scary anymore, is it?

Learn more data best practices with the free ebook below.