We are living in a data-driven world. Whether it’s your grocery shopping list or the meal you had for lunch, every bit of information proves valuable to companies and brands.
According to our previous article on ‘Big Data is Coming to Digital Marketing’, millions of ads are thrown at users every 60 seconds, often being based on personal preferences that the internet detects. Surprisingly, it’s not just big names like Google and Apple who have taken on this new strategy.
Using big data has become so common that almost anybody can begin a career in the industry as long as they have an analytical mind and are used to crunching numbers. Learning platform Udemy has a long list of data analysis courses anyone can take, which includes topics on machine learning, Microsoft Excel, and how to drive business growth in data.
These modern skills have become so integral to the success of brands across the world; the challenge now is for brands to use this data to stand out from the crowd.
That said, you can take your cue from these companies that are currently leveraging big data in creative ways.
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Spotify has elevated the way brands make recommendations to customers, particularly with their “Discover Weekly” feature. Upon realizing that users were browsing other playlists in search of new music, they identified an opportunity to take this data and automate it.
“Discover Weekly” pools together never-before-heard songs that are in line with the users’ preferences, derived from others with similar tastes. The result is a hyper-personalized playlist that feels like a friend curated it, although it’s no coincidence that Spotify already knows your next favourite song.
Looking for dating prospects
The concept of online dating is far from new. But while old school dating sites relied on questionnaires and personality quizzes, apps like Bumble integrate data across various other platforms – like your most-watched Netflix shows and your top played tracks on Spotify.
The logic behind it is simple: with more data available, the more likely you’ll find someone you’re compatible with. Recent stats from the Pew Research Center confirm that online dating is now more effective than ever, with 66% of users reporting that they have dated someone they met online.
Wildlife and environmental protection
Big data has typically been used for tracking and monitoring people, but the Nature Conservation Foundation has found another use for this technology. It is helping to protect wild tigers in India. Using data from various studies, the organization and local ecologists are able to identify key “hot spots” where there is a high probability of poaching or trafficking. This allows them to anticipate their next moves and catch the culprits in action or even before they have tried to commit a crime.
Creating original content
With more than 148 million subscribers and counting, Netflix has the upper hand when it comes to data gathering. Their metrics focus on extremely specific areas, including the date and time content is watched, the device used to watch, searches on its platform, user locations, and even portions of content that were re-watched.
The company then takes this information and uses it to create original content – the prime example being the House of Cards series. It turns out that many of their users were interested in a remake of the BBC mini-series, and enjoyed films with Kevin Spacey and David Fincher.
As a result, they predicted that combining these three elements would make a House of Cards a massive hit. The show went on to become the most-streamed piece of content in the United States and 40 other countries and is rated 9.1/10 on IMDB.
Enhancing the physical shopping experience
Big data isn’t just disrupting the digital space – it’s enhancing the physical consumer experience too. Like other retailers, Nike depends on merchants to stock their inventories based on customer preference.
Now, they’re also analyzing online buying patterns on their Nike app to see where it’s best to open new stores and which items are most likely to sell there.
Their recently opened Melrose Avenue branch is the result of this new strategy, with 50% of its apparel and 25% of footwear based on Nike commerce data. Items will also rotate based on shopping patterns in the area, ensuring that they put forward their most sellable products.
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