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YouthNation: Building Remarkable Brands in a Youth-Driven Culture by Matt Britton

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Chapter 13Big Data 101

Any business that wants to reach consumers is now playing a different game. The traditional path of “spray and pray” or blasting out messages to as many as possible has forever lost its potency. This change has created a new way to target consumers, which is more efficient, measurable, and relevant than ever before. With the withering of a mass market on television and the eventual end of mass scale (with few exceptions like the NFL) as a true asset in targeting consumers, a powerful new element has come into play that if used correctly, can make marketing and advertising more impactful than ever: that element is big data.

Big data is a term used to describe the collection of large, complex data sets gathered from consumers by brands and platforms. The information compiled in these sets could range from demographic information, such as income and race, to behavioral information, such as consumer trends, to environmental factors, such as weather and geopolitical impact.

The collection of this data, and its subsequent analysis, helps brands see correlational relationships across markets that transcend the old model of simple mass market demographics. Big data helps concretize what could be relevant for you as an individual consumer. This, in turn, leads to better decision making by brands when targeting a specific audience in an advertising campaign. Simply put, brands can now deliver the right message to the right consumer at the right time far more easily. ...

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