Big Data – It’s not just for revenue

bigdataIf you spend any time reading about big data, you’ll find that most articles, blogs and stories refer to big data as a way to generate revenue.  Now, most times you won’t see the word “revenue” used but you’ll see plenty of references to ‘clients’, ‘customers’, ‘new products’ and the like.   I’m guilty of the doing this myself. I’ve said many times that big data is a great way to generate new revenue streams, new products/services and find new clients.

All of this is true too. Big data can be used for all these things…but let’s not forget that big data can also be used to better manager an organization.

For example, big data is being used to help manage data centers more efficiently. One recent example can be found with Google’s use of big data and machine learning to better manage the Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) metric within their data centers. Another example can be found with Cloud Physics, a company that provides data center management systems, and their use of big data and predictive analytics to help manage data centers. From a recent press release, they say that they are “..shifting the focus of infrastructure management from reactive to predictive, enabling more intelligent and cost-effective IT.”

There are plenty of other examples to be found if we just start looking for them. One example comes from Google…this time in their People and Innovation Lab, where they have been using data analytics to better understand employees and the types of benefits offered to their employees. The approach is also being used by many other companies (e.g., Credit Suise and others) in order to “engage their workers in the same direct and targeted manner that marketers use to connect with consumers.”

Additionally, we are seeing a fairly large movement in the healthcare space with many people and companies looking for ways to take the data that exists today in the medical space and use it for more than just filing storage s pace. For example, hospitals are looking at ways to utilize data to better predict who may need care and when that care may be needed.

Big data is about more than just finding new revenue streams or finding ways to bring in more revenue from existing customers.  Anywhere that you have data, you have the ability to implement big data approaches to find ‘new’ knowledge from that data.  Is your organization using data for more than just trying to extract money from customers?

2 responses to “Big Data – It’s not just for revenue”

  1. Sam Avatar

    Great post! Don’t want to name names, but I’m currently working for a firm using big data from clients marketing campaigns to develop a learning center from which we can publish best practices that are backed up by analyzing tens of thousands of online marketing campaigns, Obviously there is an end revenue component involved. but its an interesting challenge trying to quantify variable qualitative aspects of a marketing campaign.

    Thanks, Sam

    1. Eric D. Brown Avatar

      Hey Sam – Thanks for the comment.

      There’s nothing wrong with revenue being tied into big data initiatives…but there are many more uses as well.

      Your project sounds great…I’d love to learn more about it at some point.