What Big Data Means for PR and Why It Matters to Us


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Invited to sit on a panel together with Paul Holmes at the PR Forum held in Bucharest March 26, Pascal shared thoughts about the Big Data tsunami which is deeply transforming marketing, communications and PR. What is "Big Data" exactly, what does it mean to businesses, why does it matter to us, and what potential issues could arise from it?

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What Big Data Means for PR and Why It Matters to Us

  1. What Big Data means for PR, and why it matters to us. Pascal Beucler, Senior Vice President & Chief Strategy Officer, MSLGROUP – PR FORUM BUCHAREST, March 26, 2014 @pbeucler
  2. Agenda 1. Big Data? 2. The Now > How organizations are using data today 3. The Next > What’s in-store for the future What Big Data means for PR, and why it matters to us.
  3. Part 1: Big data?
  4. 1. We are creating data all the time. Sometimes consciously, increasingly not.
  5. People-generated data Social-generated data Object-generated data Location-based & personalized online data that is implicitly shared during transactions, or explicitly shared such as on social media Big Web Platforms are aggregating data, thus mining collective intelligence for their own use & for third party apps More and more sensor-based devices (such as phones, wearable fitness trackers or smart appliances) help track & share real-world data Broadly speaking, three kinds of data exist: 1. We are creating data all the time. Sometimes consciously, increasingly not.
  6. “Data Never Sleeps” infographic by DOMO Here’s an idea of how much data we create every minute
  7. 2. Data is influencing people’s behavior and purchase decisions.
  8. 2. Data is influencing people’s behavior and purchase decisions. People are using data to track, compare and change their own behaviour People are accessing news & information that have been selected by algorithms People rely on aggregated ratings & reviews when making purchase decisions Wearable tracking devices for blood pressure / fitness Algorithms decide what appears in Google search results, Twitter Trends, Facebook newsfeed Aggregated ratings appear on review sites like IMDB and e-commerce sites like Amazon and eBay
  9. 3. Big Data is Good for Business.
  10. Organizations that tap into Big Data are said to have better productivity rates and higher profitability than peers that don’t, by helping them discover hidden insights and enrich information for decision makers. 3. Big Data is Good for Business. McKinsey: “Big data: The next frontier for innovation, competition, and productivity”
  11. And… more businesses are investing in it, day after day. A survey of 100 senior executives at Fortune 1000 American companies found: •  91% have a big data initiative planned or in progress •  88% expect to spend > $1 million on big data by 2016 •  50% expect to spend > $10 million! NewVantage Partners Big Data Executive Survey 2013
  12. Bottom line: Data is the new currency. Data is the currency of the Information Age: what we need to extract value from. The value of social data to businesses can’t be expressed by a single number. But when companies take the right social data and apply the right analyses to improve decision- making, they create social data equity. Jon Iwata SVP - Marketing and Communications & Chairman of the IBM Strategy Team, at the Holmes Global PR Summit in Miami “Whether on transactions, interactions or content creation, data is what's helping us understand the behavior of people.”
  13. Part 2: The Now > How organizations are using data today
  14. Organizations are using data to… identify behavioral patterns Companies & social networks with large amounts of social & transactional data are analyzing it to understand people’s behavior… facebook.com/data
  15. Organizations are using data to… identify trends Companies & social networks with large amounts of social & transactional data are analyzing it to understand trends… Overview – Google Flu Trends - youtube.com/watch?v=6111nS66Dpk
  16. Organizations are using data to… predict future behavior … and to predict people’s future behavior (and like Target did, send them ads for products they don’t even know they need yet!) How? By identifying about 25 products that, when analyzed together, help assign each shopper a “pregnancy prediction” score, including a due date to within a small window, so Target could send coupons timed to very specific stages of her pregnancy. forbes.com/sites/kashmirhill/2012/02/16/how-target-figured-out-a-teen-girl-was-pregnant-before-her-father-did/
  17. Organizations are using data to… help us track our behavior Organizations help track our energy consumption: Opower tracks people’s consumption an compares it with their neighbors – to help them manage their consumption. opower.com/
  18. Organizations are using data to… help us track our behavior And our physical activity: Nike+ products measures people’s activity and presents them as Fuel Points – which people can compare with friends and peers. Introducing Nike Fuel - youtube.com/watch?v=bvMohoDFZ30
  19. Organizations are using data to… help us track our behavior And even our finances: Intuit’s Mint.com helps people aggregate all their financial accounts into one dashboard and set goals – and shows how they are performing against peers. opower.com/
  20. Organizations are using data to… crowdsource insights They also help us track traffic and road conditions. Waze crowdsources data from millions of users and uses it to compute the best routes – in real time. Introducing Waze - youtube.com/watch?v=R8WKW0xeBxU
  21. Organizations are using data to… crowdsource insights And business opportunities. KBC Bank in Brussels crowdsourced ‘gaps’ in the market to help entrepreneurs identify where their services would be most needed. KBC Bank’s Gap in the Maket - youtube.com/watch?v=U76EIiTW_LE
  22. Part 3: The Next > What’s in-store for the future
  23. The Scope of Big Data is very wide. Today, we have Big Data-driven…. Web Intelligence Business Intelligence Trend Analysis Competitive Intelligence Technology Intelligence Collective Intelligence Audience Intelligence
  24. Big data is transforming the future of insights generation and reputation management, core parts of our business. Data-driven insights are crucial for the PR industry: they provide credibility to our strategic planning, research and insights. Such a capacity is a must-have nowadays. Data is a transcript of companies’ reputations, a wealth of comments that are preserved, growing daily and evolving over time. It is the norm today to monitor social data to feel the pulse of stakeholders and identify crises early on. Insights Reputation
  25. With tools including: We have already begun using Big Data in PR, to… •  Identify our audience’s interests and sentiments •  Identify the real influencers, by geography and interest •  Analyze brand’s position in the competitive landscape •  Monitor what people are saying, in the past and in the now (to identify crisis) •  Measure engagement, conversations and shift in perception (to measure response) Generate Insights Safeguard Reputation
  26. MSLGROUP’s indexSocial MSLGROUP Espalhe’s indexSocial helps brands compare their social performance against competitors & discover insights about their strategy. Overview: indexSocial - youtube.com/watch?v=P6yveCvN1vM
  27. MSLGROUP’s Social Hive Index MSLGROUP’s Social Hive Index allows brands to select relevant parameters and compare performance of brands. In Action: The PurPle Index studies how the Fortune 100 brands engage people around health, environment, education & human potential. Introducing the PurPle Index - mslgroup.com/insights/publications/2013/purple-index/
  28. Big data offers solutions not just for consumers but also for employees. Several organizations are using Big Data to engage employees – with initiatives ranging from data-driven training and retention strategies to personalized intranets,
  29. How we should continue to use Big Data in 2014 Big Data is a new field, one that didn’t exist 20 years ago. As we re-define the boundaries of PR today, there is an opportunity for us to become the custodians of Big Data. We should embrace data to: •  Generate better insights - using pre-existing data or crowdsourcing fresh data •  Evolve storytelling tactics – with personalized messages based on real time/predictive analysis •  Identify & celebrate new milestones – with new measurable metrics like NikeFuel •  Measure brand promise and citizenship initiatives – using sensor devices or crowdsourcing •  Design better engagement programs – personalize experiences for consumers & employees alike
  30. To deliver on this, it is important for us to become data analysts. Hal Varian Chief Economist, Google “The ability to take data—to be able to understand it, to process it, to extract value from it, to visualize it, to communicate it… “that’s going to be a hugely important skill in the next decades.”
  31. But: We must also pay attention to Security & Privacy concerns. People are worried about: •  Illegal surveillance of data •  Data breaches •  Privacy breaches •  Marketers’ using their data Source: theguardian.com , cnbc.com, huffingonpost.com, blogs.wsj.com
  32. And let’s be clever and engaging. •  We know people dislike intrusive messaging, and are seeing their weariness as social networks push out more intrusive messaging (such as YouTube ads that can no longer be ‘skipped’). •  We have an opportunity to shape the direction of the new industry. We shoudn’t use the old way of broadcasting, but instead should respect people’s ethos and deliver clever, respectful and engaging experiences. •  Let’s shift from intrusive and creepy, to create delight and added value for all.
  33. MSLGROUP.COM @mslgroup pascal.beucler@mslgroup.com