The rise of social media has created endless amounts of data for marketers to sift through looking for insights. Customers’ opinions on your product and how it could be improved, your brand, as well as your competitors and their products, are all at your fingertips—but only if you know where to find them.

Although there’s a huge amount of data being created online every day, we’ve only been able to gather actionable insights from a small percentage of it. Billions of pieces of data, in the form of thoughts, social commentary, and discussions with friends, are taking place online constantly. The most useful insights for brands are stuck somewhere within all of these interactions. This quickly growing pool of information is called Human Data.

Human Data is closely connected to Big Data, and refers to both structured and unstructured data generated by humans, whether that’s consumers’ contact information, purchase history or social media data. What’s more, the amount of data created is expected to double every year until 2020, and 33% of it is predicted to contain valuable insights, once analyzed. Big Data is big, but Human Data, with its pervasiveness and exponential growth, will be bigger —and CMOs need to learn how to use it.

Say, for example, you’re the new CMO at a popular snack brand and have been hired to help grow sales against your biggest competitor. How can you attack this problem with the data available to you? For starters, if you know to analyze the Human Data from your customers, you can use those insights to learn why they favor your brand over your competitor’s or vice versa. Maybe your brand has a reputation for being healthier or the price point is better for your target audience. Whatever these insights turn up, they can all be unearthed through analysis of your customers’ online interactions around your brand. Failing to analyze such data may result in brands missing the opportunity to optimize and grow their operations.

With that being said, how can CMOs determine the actual value of Human Data? How can CMOs use Human Data to manage their brand’s reputation and strength, grow sales, expand customer service and magnify share of voice?

The best way to tap into this value is to implement a Human Data platform that integrates all available data—social, blogs, news and other content—into a single hub. Having a place to combine and store real-time and historical data allows the most accurate analysis of your brands’ insights.

Let’s say that a CMO is tasked with marketing, upselling and cross-selling athletic attire. Once you’ve implemented a Human Data platform, you can analyze engagement data from different regions and enhance campaigns by integrating popular content from social media. You can also mix the same kind of content into your campaign that fitness consumers search for online—think blog posts or Pinterest boards—to get a true understanding of customers’ perceptions of your brand.

Not only does a Human Data platform allow you to gather such insights, it lets you filter billions of data points, interactions, conversations, and news sources efficiently and effectively in real-time. This way, your team can take back some extra time and put it toward data analysis that will grow the business.