By Derrick Harris (courtesy GigaOm)
photo: Shutterstock / Sergey Nivens
Summary:WalmartLabs has acquired a predictive analytics startup called Inkiru to bolster its ability to create better customer experiences through data. The division of Walmart was created in 2011 on a foundation of big data.
Walmart, it seems, will not go gently into that good night when it comes to the company’s fight against e-commerce giant Amazon.
Inkiru has developed an active learning system that combines real-time predictive intelligence, big data analytics and a customizable decision engine to inform and streamline business decisions
Predictive intelligence bought by WalmartLabsInkiru‘s predictive analytics platform will enable us to further accelerate the big data capabilities that @WalmartLabs has propelled forward at scale…including site personalization, search, fraud prevention and marketing. Walmart’s data scientists will now be able to work with big data directly and create impact faster than ever before.
Related VideoWalmart Labs Inkiru - A Funny Name for Serious Analytics (SiliconANGLE)
- WalmartLabs keeps getting smarter with Inkiru acquisition (gigaom.com)
- We Predict Big Data Will Move Much Faster (walmartlabs.blogspot.com)
- New Report Shows How to Turn Big Data into Big Bucks (domo.com)
- Walmart Labs Buys Data Analytics And Predictive Intelligence Startup Inkiru (techcrunch.com)
- Walmart snaps up big data startup Inkiru (zdnet.com)
Underdelivering on expectations
IT and business leaders nearly universally believe in the value of big data, but many current projects are underdelivering on expectations, a survey indicates.
The survey by IDG Research and big data solution provider Kapow Software suggests that companies are having trouble gathering actionable business insights from big data fast enough.
The research also suggests the emergence of a new technology trend – the consumerization of big data.
Hopes and realities
While only one in three respondents have implemented a big data solution at present, nearly nine in ten agree that there’s huge value to be had from big data. And the pace of adoption is expected to double over the next 12 months.
IT leaders agree that the value of big data is its ability to help make intelligent business decisions and foster a data-driven organization.
Around 80% consider big data to be critical or very important for making informed business decisions. Almost as many believe big data is key to increasing competitive advantage, while 68% cite improving customer satisfaction.
Other popular uses for big data include increasing end-user productivity, improving information security and creating new products and services.
But of the companies that have adopted big data, more than 50% report having only lukewarm success.
The research suggests that big data projects are taking too long, costing too much and underdelivering on ROI. Most respondents believe that big data requires a prohibitively expensive investment in infrastructure.
Partly for this reason, big data projects typically take 18 months or more to complete, an eternity in the IT world.
Faced with these delays, employees from multiple parts of the business are taking it on themselves to attempt to mine insights from big data solutions. More than 80% of survey respondents report that manual data aggregation is being conducted in their business, with IT being tasked to try to automate these internal efforts.
Time and money aren’t the only barriers to big data adoption. Nearly half (43%) of IT leaders also report finding it difficult to find, access and integrate the right information among the piles of data needed. The data they require is often unstructured and spread across a wide range of internal and external sources.
A lack of awareness of the technology’s potential is considered the biggest barrier to big data success.
Furthermore, businesses are finding it difficult to wring value from big data without the presence of expensive data scientists or consultants.
Big data is mostly useless without employees with special training, and specialists are in short supply. Business leaders at the forefront of a big data project are often having to wait for their IT teams to extract insight using the complicated tools available today.
Demand is therefore springing up for simple but effective big data tools that can break down the barriers preventing big data from becoming a business rather than IT endeavor.
With consumerization transforming enterprise IT, users want the same user-centric approach to transform the tools they use, to help address the complexity barriers to big data utilization. More than half of IT leaders consider this a chance to become a business partner.
Tools with the ability to deliver insights in an accessible, easy-to-consume format have the potential to be more cost effective, to be deployed more rapidly and to avoid the expense and headache of a lengthy infrastructure rollout.
- Big Data – Helping Businesses Develop Better Perspectives (bigdatacompany.wordpress.com)
- Big Data Infographic | How Big is Big Data? | Domo | Blog (domo.com)
- Big Data – Security Concerns Rob Many Of Huge Benefits (bigdatacompany.wordpress.com)
- How Are You Managing Big Data? Data, Data Everywhere | Domo | Blog (domo.com)
- Big Data – Beyond The Hype, What Will It Do For Us? (bigdatacompany.wordpress.com)
- Infographic: The Physical Size of Big Data (domo.com)
The analysis firm IDC says the world’s information is doubling every two years. With this rate of data production, it means that some of the data is falling by the wayside when it is not put to immediate use.
What is “Dark Data”?
What is “Dark Data”? It is different for each organization, but it is essentially data that is not being used to get a 360 degree view of a customer. For instance, a bank or retailer, that is only looking at transactional information or CRM database information to target a customer with a promotion — is only seeing part of the picture and understanding a fraction of the preferences of that consumer. The highly valuable data about who these customers are interacting with and what they are saying in social mediums — like how they feel about brands, what they are looking for, where they shop, their personal network, a customer service experience they had as they walked into a bank or store — is left dark.
Before You Maximize “Dark Data”, Know Your Data
Before diving in on how businesses can better harness “Dark Data”, first consider all the different types of data and how they benefit the company.
From the traditional business perspective, there is enterprise resource planning (ERP) that provides businesses with intelligence on how to manage and coordinate all the resources, information, and functions of a business; customer relationship management (CRM) that provides data on employees’ interactions with customers, clients, and sales prospects; and then the data warehouse that serves as a database that can provide historical (often aggregated) structured data, like point of sale (POS) figures, or can be used to help provide forward-looking reports based on trending data.
Next to those datasets, large consumer-centric companies have huge amounts of internal transaction and operations data, such as payments, calls, texts, digital TV activity, etc. This is a goldmine of information, but unfortunately few companies have the knowledge or resources to leverage this wealth of data when it comes to interacting with customers, attracting new customers, and improving relationships with the good ones.
This, combined with unstructured data generated from the web and social media, can hold a wealth of information on a consumer’s browsing preference. For instance, social networks that detail specific consumer preferences, interests and affiliations, and mobile technologies, such as geolocation or mobile wallet applications that when combined, can help businesses target a buyer on-the-go. In essence, there are billions of data points circulating at any given time.
If a business is not able to consolidate and consider data from all of these different fire-hose sources of information, simultaneously, then that business has a very limited and inaccurate view of the consumer. And while “Dark Data” will not entirely thwart business operations, it will cause a number of missed opportunities and leave a gaping hole in providing a 360 degree view of a customer.
How to Avoid Leaving Data in the Dark
As “Dark Data” continues to grow exponentially in every enterprise, here are a few tips to start shedding light on “Dark Data”:
- Look to invest in a consumer intelligence solution that sits on top of these kinds of databases to search, index and provide real-time assessments of consumer activity. This will help ensure that your organization is getting a 360 view of a customer and acting on that intelligence in real time.
- If mobile data is not feeding into your company’s overall business intelligence on the consumer, make it happen. Companies should be ‘meeting’ their consumers on their mobile devices and embracing — or at least preparing for a mobile wallet strategy, which is growing in popularity and adoption.
- Embrace transactions from operational systems and your web traffic as valuable data. Combined with classic enterprise data (i.e. CRM, ERP) and with other Big Data sources (i.e. web traffic, social media), it can often reveal more relevant consumer data to help spur a sale or transaction and ignoring this information is leaving a gap in a true 360 degree view of the customer.
See the complete article
- Leveraging Big Data for addressing CRM Challenges (customerthink.com)
- Big Data – big deal or big hype? (analytics-ideas.com)
- Visualizing ‘Big Data’ So We Can Understand the ‘Dark Data’ (business2community.com)
- Big Data, Meet Long Data (informationweek.com)
- 5 Ways Big Data Is Going To Blow Your Mind (mayo615.com)