Shedding Light on “Dark Data”

Shedding Light on “Dark Data”
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I admit that I find the term “Dark Data” compelling as I conjure up mysterious images. In reality, “Dark Data” refers to the already existing, but under-utilized bits of information lurking in the dusty recesses of almost every company’s database. This often overlooked data enables companies to understand their customers, make connections not only to customers but between customers, and use this analysis to earn their business and loyalty over the long term.

Some background to the topic: ISM and Pitney Bowes sponsored a well-attended webinar – Big Data Analytics & Insight: Foundational to an Effective Customer-Centric Strategy – held March 11, 2014. Barton Goldenberg, ISM’s President, and Paul Thompson, Pitney Bowes’ Director of Analytical Services EMEA, dug deep into the key challenges associated with putting into place a sound strategy.

Capturing useful information that is transactional and pertains to basics such as customer name, addresses, credit card information, SKU, and more, is routine but it’s the non-transactional date that is harder to find, therefore its Dark Data.

To address this, Pitney Bowes commissioned an in-depth article: How Can Your Business Better Utilize “Dark Data”? This incisive paper includes insights from Barton and Paul as well as Dr. Gerhard Heide, Director, Global Market Strategy at Pitney Bowes.

Barton describes this often-neglected data to include everything from what the customer says about a company/product/service in social media to responses to marketing pieces and product surveys. Barton emphasizes that turning customer data, including Dark Data, into actionable intelligence can help businesses compete by being more attuned to individual customers.

Kudos to Pitney Bowes for this insightful article, you can read it at How Can Your Business Better Utilize “Dark Data?” to learn more.