Opportunities of big data

If you stop to think about the activities you can perform with data, the answer is: everything. The opportunities of big data are endless! 

We have often heard about the opportunities of big data: that data is the new oil, the engine that fuels marketing and business strategies and allows brands to be ever closer to customer needs. 

Therefore, when we talk about data today it means talking about opportunities for development and improvement on several fronts. In this post, we’ll look at some success stories to see how data can help brands develop new products, advertising campaigns, and initiatives. 


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What is data-driven marketing

Before we talk about the opportunities of big data and how to seize them, it’s critical to start with the definition of data-driven marketing. 

Google defines data-driven marketing as an approach to marketing and communications that starts with available data to understand the needs of your audience in order to establish more effective strategies and initiatives (source: ThinkwithGoogle). 

As we mentioned, today’s companies can no longer do without data-driven marketing: it helps them improve the performance of their strategies and it allows them to develop multi-channel campaigns that reach consumers along all stages of the funnel.  

It is also important to note that data analysis enables companies to make predictive analyses about future consumer needs and to put strategic actions in place. 

In this regard, we must point out that 89% of marketers consider predictive analytics as an indispensable factor for the growth and success of a brand over time (source: Thinkwithgoogle). 

Therefore, there are many advantages of data-driven marketing for a company and, to explain them, we decided to do it through some data:  

  • According to Forbes, 64% of managers believe that data-driven marketing offers a competitive advantage in business choices over competitors;  
  • Companies that adopt data-driven marketing strategies are more likely to increase profits; 
  • 75% of companies have experienced an increase in customer engagement through data-driven marketing (source: attomdata.com) 

Another undeniable benefit of data-driven marketing relates to personalization. We have already seen how collecting and analyzing data can help you more accurately segment your audience and personalize communications, products, and services you offer.  

In fact, 80% of consumers are more likely to buy from a brand that offers personalized experiences (source: Forbes). 

Not only do consumers expect to receive personalized experiences, but in 65% of cases they are also willing to provide their data in return (source: Persado). 

According to 53% of marketers, this need is one of the main factors driving them to invest in data-driven marketing (source: Media Math). 

Finally, consumer data allows for a better understanding of the target audience for marketing campaigns and activities, and it helps improve creative and storytelling aspects.  


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Opportunities of big data: improve creativity and storytelling 

In a previous post, we talked about how data can help brands deliver unforgettable creative campaigns.  

In fact, data is a valuable resource at all stages of the creative process, and more companies are realizing its value.  

According to recent research from Gartner, 76% of marketers make creative choices based on data analysis. Such choices can make a difference in both the relationship between brands and consumers and in sales. In fact, a Google analysis found that about 40% of sales are influenced by a creative campaign.  

Being able to redesign creative formats and offer useful and engaging content thanks to data means being able to listen to consumers and succeed in building relationships that last over time. This aspect has also been demonstrated by some case studies shared by Google.  

Specifically, the creative directors of communication agencies such as We are Unlimited, AMP Agency, and BBDO found that data was the key to knowing consumers’ behaviors, interests, and expectations, and it made it possible to reach them through more real and engaging stories, and to simplify creative processes and maximize campaign investments (source: Thinkwithgoogle). 

Working on creativity and storytelling through data can really make a difference in your campaign’s success.  

Below, let’s look at two examples of how data has been used to create campaigns and products that target specific audiences.  

 Data: the starting point creative at Lenovo   

The first example of how data allows you to better understand consumers and capture their attention through tailored marketing activities and products is Lenovo‘s “Just Watch Us” campaign.  

To intercept the Gen Z audience, Lenovo has leveraged a theme of sustainability, to which young people pay a lot of attention, launching a new product that is designed specifically for them.  

The “Just Watch Us” campaign features the ThinkPad Z series PCs, whose design recalls nature through colors (bronze and arctic gray) and which is made with materials such as recycled aluminum and vegan leather. In addition, the packaging is made of bamboo and sugarcane.  

From the communication point of view, it’s worth noting that the campaign to promote the new Lenovo devices was well conceived and executed for the Gen Z audience.  

As we mentioned, this audience is very attentive to environmental issues and also promotes a radical change in lifestyles, consumption, and use of content, so it can perfectly recognize itself in the slogan “Just watch us change the world from anywhere!”. 

 Data gives rise to creative campaigns for tourism

Another interesting initiative is the one implemented in 2019 by Tourism Ireland.  

“Fill your heart with Ireland” is the first tourism campaign created by combining technology, biometric data, and emotions, and starting from the concept that when the brain perceives an emotion, the heart rate increases. 

To carry out the campaign, some tourists were invited to visit the island wearing a heart rate monitor that was able to detect changes in their heart rate for the duration of their trip. The device was connected to a video camera that was activated by following the heartbeat and recorded images of the places that most excited the visitors.  

What makes this campaign special is that the creative is completely data-driven. In fact, the biometric data made it possible to choose the images to be used in the campaign to promote the places and activities that can make a trip to Ireland an unforgettable experience.  

Data and technology made it possible to build storytelling in an innovative way and to make it as real and truthful as possible. This is also echoed in the words of Niam Kinsella, director for Italy at Tourism Ireland: “Instead of claiming that Ireland can get right to the heart of the matter, we used technology to prove that it really does” (source: mediaireland.com). 

Data turns…into clothing and artwork

We’ve just seen how data can be used to create innovative marketing campaigns tailored to specific audiences. However, in the next few paragraphs, we’ll look at two examples that have transformed data into tangible objects.  

Fashion becomes data-driven: Giorgia Lupi for & Other stories 

In 2019, designer Giorgia Lupi was inspired by data to create a collection for the clothing brand & Other Stories.  

The project was created from the stories of three women who have had a major impact on modern society: Ada Lovelace, a mathematician and today considered as the first computer programmer in history; Mae Jemison, the first African-American astronaut to go into space; and Rachel Carson, an activist who started the environmental movement in the United States.  

For the garments inspired by Ada Lovelace, Giorgia Lupi designed a colorful geometric pattern that analyzes the mathematical structure of Lovelace’s algorithm.  

The garments dedicated to Mae Jemison are a visual representation of the 126 orbits she made around the Earth and the days she spent in the 1992 space expedition.  

Finally, the pattern inspired by Rachel Carson was created starting from a structural and semantic analysis of the contents of her book “Silent Spring.” Each element represents one of the 17 chapters of the book and each color has been associated with one of the 15 most frequent words (e.g. insect, water, cell). (source ilpost.it) 

What is clear from this project is that, thanks to data, creativity knows no limits and data can take real and concrete forms, like a garment. 

 Data-driven art: the next Rembrandt

During our last Doxee Digital Club appointment, we spoke with Michele Caruso, Head of Data and CX Director at Wunderman&Thomson Italy, about the art project “The Next Rembrandt”, supported by ING.  

The goal of the project was to analyze 346 works by the artist Rembrandt and collect as much information as possible about his brush strokes, colors, techniques, shapes, and the most common features of his style. Thanks to the high volume of data and the use of algorithms to collect and understand it, it was possible to create a new work, the so-called “The Next Rembrandt.” 

The painting was created through the use of a three-dimensional printer and perfectly represents the artist’s style and technique. 

Therefore, we can say that the data has been transformed into a work of art and has made it possible to give new life to a great artist of the past but also to make a step forward in the field of art research. This has happened for some Van Gogh pieces that were recovered through the use of artificial intelligence (source: Multi-scale convolutional neural network for pixel-wise reconstruction of Van Gogh’s drawings). 

Data: the key to new business models and more human approaches

As we discussed during the Doxee Digital Club, the Rembrandt case is unique and it can be a source of inspiration for creating new business models.  

Today, it’s important to be able to understand the opportunities of big data and how to start from them to get to understand the levers that drive concepts such as upselling and cross-selling, loyalty, increase in sales, and purchase frequency.  

In our daily challenges, data allows us to achieve the most effective communication possible, which attracts and engages a specific person in the best possible way at the right time. 

Not only that, to quote the philosophy of Giorgia Lupi who introduced the concept of data humanism, data has become a tool that allows us to ask questions in a systematic and analytical way and to look at things differently, making us more human as well.