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Canary in the Coalmine: How Social Media Can Prepare Us for Big Data
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Canary in the Coalmine: How Social Media Can Prepare Us for Big Data


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n this talk, Il discuss how organizations are addressing the challenges of social data--technological, organizational and cultural--and what it can teach us on the road to big data.

n this talk, Il discuss how organizations are addressing the challenges of social data--technological, organizational and cultural--and what it can teach us on the road to big data.

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  • Data proliferation
  • 32-43 are critical
  • Early coal mines did not feature ventilation systems, so legend has it that miners would bring a caged canary into new coal seams. Canaries are especially sensitive to methane and carbon monoxide, which made them ideal for detecting any dangerous gas build-ups. As long as the bird kept singing, the miners knew their air supply was safe. A dead canary signaled an immediate evacuation
  • Transcript

    • 1. 1 Canary in the Coal Mine: How Social Data Can Prepare Us for Big DataFebruary 26, 2013Susan Etlinger, Industry Analyst@setlinger
    • 2. 2 “I believe that, in the future, social networks will be like air.” Charlene Li, 2008© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 3. 3 1: Social data is a type of big data Volume Velocity Variety Millions of Thousands Structured conversations of posts per and second unstructured data Source (3Vs construct) : Gartner Group© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 4. 4 2. Social media spans the enterprise "In which of the following departments are there dedicated people (can be less than one FTE) executing social?" Marketing 73.4% Corporate Communications/PR 65.6% Customer Support 39.8% Digital 36.7% Social Media 35.2% HR 28.9% Product development/R&D 16.4% Advertising 16.4% At least 13 different Customer/User experience 14.8% IT 14.1% departments actively Executive 10.9% involved in social media Legal 9.4% Market Research 7.8% 0.0% 10.0% 20.0% 30.0% 40.0% 50.0% 60.0% 70.0% 80.0%© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 5. 5 Average number of owned social accounts (enterprise-class companies): 178© 2013 Altimeter Group 2012
    • 6. 6 3: Business value depends on where you sit© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 7. 7 Six primary use cases for social data© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 8. 8 4: It disrupts interpretive conventions 1. Strains the definition of an analyst.Consumerization of IT = consumerization of data. Broader set of stakeholders trying to interpret social data. 2. Strains the definition of expertise. Social expertise, analytical expertise. Few combine both domains. 3. Strains confidence levels. Nascent analytics and 3-V data make for imperfect science. 4. This will only get worse as data becomes more freely available in real/right time.© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 9. 9 Organizations experiment to find meaning…© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 10. 10 …with unexpected results© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 11. 11 5. It drives organizational change© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 12. 5 primary organizational structures for social Centralized Distributed Coordinated Multiple Hub Holistic and Spoke© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 13. 13 Most companies organize as Hub & Spoke, but are moving toward Multiple Hub & Spoke 2010 2012 9.4% 29.1% 35.4% 23.6% 2.4%© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 14. 14 In summary, social data… 1. is a type of 2. spans the 3. has variable big data organization business value 4. disrupts how 5. drives All this is or will we understand organizational be true of big our business change data© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 15. 15 “If big data will be like air, we’d better start taking care of our air quality now.” Susan Etlinger, 2013© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 16. 16 Social data is the canary in the coal mine Life for an actual canary in a coal mine could be described in three words: "short but meaningful.” Source:© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 17. 17 Air quality control for big data 1. It’s not just about IT data and analysts • Social data stakeholders are big data stakeholders. Build relationships and plan cohesive analytical approaches • Enterprises are already starting to integrate social and enterprise data; get ahead of the curve • This requires mutual education • Cultivate your business stakeholders now, including executive champions! • Hint: remember the 13 departments and start there)© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 18. 18 Air quality control for big data 2. It requires a holistic approach with tailored execution • Analysts across the organization must work cohesively with shared approaches and tools • This means different backgrounds, skill levels and focuses • Start incrementally and build over time© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 19. 19 Air quality control for big data 3. Use social media adoption as a starting point for what to expect: • Financial. Building business cases; what’s working? • Organizational. Which silos are breaking? How is the organization adapting? • Cultural. What happens when big data is a given? How does it affect decision making? • Political. How are decisions being made? What are the unintended consequences?© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 20. 20 A healthy environment = happy canaries© 2013 Altimeter Group
    • 21. 21 Thank you Susan Etlinger Twitter: setlinger© 2013 Altimeter Group