<trp-post-container data-trp-post-id='24198'>Le big data explains nothing !

Big data is all the rage


The most advanced companies hire data scientists to analyse the huge mass of data - internal, external (retrieved from social media, for example) and third-party (purchased from specialist suppliers).

To analyse, but above all to take action: because big data is the first step towards marketing automation, that marvellous system that ensures you don't miss a single sale.

The approach is simple: people who behave in a certain way are likely to buy a certain product - and that's just as well, you're selling it! All you have to do is identify individuals in your data whose behaviour is similar to that of the most promising prospects, and offer them a promotional offer they won't be able to resist.

Visitors to TripAdvisor's Roman pages are more likely than others to book a hotel room in the Eternal City, so now's the time to offer them a dream pension at a dream price!

As for those who have just compared TV prices at an online retailer, there's a good chance they'll want to buy a new one in the next few weeks.


The system has serious limitations


The first is that we never know when the prospect has completed his transaction: and the unfortunate person continues to receive the most fabulous offers for a product that he won't be buying for a long time.

But above all, you'll never know why people prefer your product (maybe not so bad) ... or your competitor's (and that's more embarrassing): big data and marketing automation are a bit like wild thought, dear to Lévi-Strauss: they replicate the same patterns ad infinitum, because once, it worked. Of course, they know how to adapt, but they only work by reproducing successful processes.

Big Data will never explain why "hot prospects" end up buying your competitor's product or service ... when you could make the slightest change to win the day.

Only a little qualitative research can help you understand where things are going wrong, what's missing: often not much...

Big data is not a universal panacea: if you want to understand what consumers really want beyond the raw facts, only marketing research can help.

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