Many organisations have been using big data in recent years to ensure they provide a relevant and compelling customer experience. However, one expert believes the emphasis – among marketers in particular – is set to move towards smart data instead.

Mark Howe, managing director for agency operations for north and central Europe at Google, said this means marketers will use “more hypothesis-driven and creative analytical approaches” to simplify some of the complexity that comes with big data.

Netflix was highlighted as an example of one brand adopting this approach, with Mr Howe noting it uses piracy statistics “to figure out what viewers want to watch and thereby inform what programming it should provide”.

“Because today’s consumers are so connected, digital is uniquely positioned to clue marketers in on users’ offline and online behaviours across devices,” he commented.

Mr Howe pointed out that measurement, attribution and analytics have developed significantly over the last year.

As a result, he is confident that progress achieved in 2015 will give marketers “even more latitude” to focus on the needs of customers – “undaunted by the complexities of devices, channels, ad formats and the rest”.

Mr Howe went on to note that the constant connectivity of consumers has raised their expectations of services and organisations. As a result, they want what they are buying at a time and location that suits them.

Nevertheless, he said the objective of marketers is the same as it always was – and that they must keep focusing on delivering the right messages to the intended recipients at the best times.

Smart data tops Google’s top marketing predictions, Media Week

Posted by Robin McCrink