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2nd Watch Survey: Big Data, IoT and Cloud are Driving Digital Marketing

BigData_20152nd Watch has completed a survey of 500 IT and marketing professionals in large and midsize companies regarding the use of big data, Internet of Things (IoT) and cloud-based data warehouse technologies to support digital marketing plans and programs. The results indicate growing confidence in the use of these technologies and success deploying them. The survey ran online the first two weeks in July.

Big data, IoT and cloud are the hottest trends in technology, their applications numerous, from improving science and research to optimizing sports team performance and aiding law enforcement. In the business world, these technologies have become a primary driver of digital marketing initiatives. Massive data volumes, sourced from websites, apps and machines, enable marketers to develop highly targeted digital campaigns and promotions.

Some top-line results from the 2nd Watch survey:

  • 50% of respondents are likely to expand use of big data to support digital marketing. Another third say programs have been so successful, they plan to divert resources intended for other projects to support big data-based digital marketing programs.
  • The majority of respondents (38%) are using big data to support digital marketing, but are in the beginning stages of doing so; 28% are being very aggressive.
  • The majority of respondents (29%) are using big data to better understand customers. The second most popular reason is for improving supply chains.
  • Nearly half (47%) say big data-based digital marketing campaigns have been effective for meeting customer engagement and demand generation goals. One quarter say they’ve eclipsed goals for these campaigns and are generating a quantifiable return on investment.
  • 40% are using machine data (Internet of Things) to support digital marketing, but are in the beginning stages of doing this. Nearly 20% are being very aggressive this way, and another quarter or so (27%) plan to begin an IoT project for digital marketing soon.
  • Top uses for IoT in digital marketing: better understanding of customer preferences (28%), to power campaigns and promotions (24%), to drive customer-facing web and mobile apps (14%).
  • 70% say they’ve been successful in meeting or exceeding their IoT-based digital marketing goals.
  • More than half (53%) say it’s likely they’ll expand IoT-based digital marketing programs.
  • 40% say cost is the biggest consideration when implementing big data and IoT-based digital marketing programs. 21% say lack of executive support is the biggest challenge (“They don’t yet see the value.”). 20% say technical skills are the chief impediment- they don’t have the skills in-house.
  • The majority (41%) say they’ll likely use a cloud-based data warehouse to support digital marketing in the near future. 15% are already doing this.
  • 39% say cost is the primary benefit of using a cloud-based data warehouse for digital marketing (“It’s significantly cheaper than the alternative.”), while 35% cite flexibility and 26% say scalability.
  • 49% say they use some internal IT resources to manage a cloud-based data warehouse, but they also use a third-party provider with deeper knowledge of these systems. 18% outsource management of their cloud-based data warehouse entirely.

Really, we’re not surprised by the survey results,” says Jeff Aden, co-founder and EVP of Marketing and Strategic Business Development at 2nd Watch. “We talk to companies everyday that want our help with big data, IoT and cloud-based digital marketing initiatives. Our considerable experience in these areas is a competitive differentiator.”

 

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