For most people, the term Big Data is scary. There's something about the term that conjures up imagery of the NSA spying on us.
Ironically, as businesses and individuals continue to create solutions to protect sensitive material from becoming accessible, a drastic shift in technology is paving a new paradigm in marketing and communication.
Businesses are moving to the cloud. Brands are investing in social media. Digital and content marketing are no longer optional. Access to real time analytics and social listening tools means target marketing to and engaging with a core audience can be done in real time. In short, growing a business today, at scale, is relatively easy.
For any business using social media, Twitter is probably one of the top three digital marketing platforms. With an average of over half a billion tweets sent daily, micro content is changing communication.
Each day, people are investing valuable time pinging, tweeting, snapping pictures, and sharing their experiences. Each tweet is another piece of micro content. Each tweet has value.
What does this saturation of content and over communicating mean for businesses?
Every business wants one thing... money.
In order to turn a profit, businesses need to remain ahead of the game. They need to analyze what is being said about their business, their competitors, industry trends, and shifting consumer preferences.
The listening tools have always been available. Twitter's API enabled any business direct access to the metrics. The challenge - deciphering the data and translating it into usable metrics within a business context. How can a business transform all of this information into bottom line revenue?
Or in other words, where's the ROI in all of this?
The answer to this core business question came on Wednesday, when IBM and Twitter announced a unique partnership. Essentially, this collaboration will change the future of how businesses use digital content to benefit the bottom line.
IBM's Watson and Blue Mix platform will organize Twitter's unique 'ADD style' of communication into a dashboard offering a streamline of insights and interactions. The platform will enable businesses to translate all of the data into usable marketing-related data. Armed with this information, businesses can focus on creating better customer experiences and target products to customer needs and interests.
Ginni Rometti, CEO of IBM said "Twitter has created something extraordinary -- a new and growing class of data."
Each tweet is valuable. Each tweet can provide any company with useful data about their consumers. Twitter has build a solid app for consumers, the partnership with IBM enables them to provide value to innovate and design better products for consumers.
Finally, ROI of Micro Content
Digital marketing is actively responsible for a shift in business communication. The terms B2B and B2C are no longer relevant. Today, a successful business is based on human-to-human (H2H) interactions. Social media marketing is predicated on this tenet. Unfortunately, marketers killed it by broadcasting and spamming.
Marketing is often seen as exclusively creative. True marketing success is based on data, analysis and product market fit. Yes, taking that data and transforming it into valuable content requires creativity, but it's easier when there's supporting data to guide the marketing team. Social media requires listening (maybe even primarily) and engaging with an audience. Listening is of minimal value if the brand is simply relying on memory and anecdotes. It requires clear, usable, data to produce material that is relevant. Not just simple data (number of followers) but real data. Until today, even with all of the tools and the API, collecting this real data that considers brand mentions (both positive and negative), customer service requests, content that reviews products, takes listening to a whole new level where a business can actually take action.
What's unique now is that Twitter and IBM are now able to show that any business can see value in every piece of micro content.
So what does this data consolidation mean?
The partnership between IBM and Twitter means consumers will see less of a blur between digital and real-life interactions. For brands, simplifying the process of translating data into tangible consumer focused innovation infuses each piece of micro content with serious value.