You have likely run across the term “data aggregator” when researching online marketing strategies. So what is it exactly, and how can your e-commerce or brick-and-mortar business benefit from it?
For the purposes of this post, we are limiting the term “data aggregation” to reference the compilation and analysis of information from a variety of public and business databases. While the basic principle of data aggregation has been around since the beginning of advertising in the 1920s, the availability of information in digital form makes the process much easier today
From Prospect Lists to Big Data
In the early days, the major result of data aggregation was a list of individuals or entities that met certain characteristics—a prospect list. Prospect lists identified places and people that might be interested in taking desired actions such as making a purchase, contributing to a charity, or voting for a certain candidate. Purchasers of these lists used the information to market products and ideas to likely purchasers and adopters through mass mailings, phone calls, radio and TV spots, and even billboards.
Fast forward to 2017. Today, the analysis allows for even more than the precise identification of likely customers. The analysis and evaluation part of aggregation is often referred to as “big data.” The term refers not only to the size of the data sets but also to the complex analysis required to deliver the requested information. From government websites to call-center databases, there are many sources of information. Using that information effectively is the big challenge.
What Can Big Data Do for My Business?
It is much easier to manipulate data and target likely prospects with precision than ever before. Data aggregators provide information about almost anything that an e-commerce or brick-and-mortar business could want for marketing its products and services.
Aggregators sell data based on documented or reported actions:
- Does one zip code have a record of purchasing more of a certain product than the neighboring area?
- What is the average age of the residents on a particular street based on public records? What is their average income?
- How many children per household have been reported?
- What is the average size of the house lots or the assessed value of the houses?
- When are people most likely to read a Facebook ad or a marketing email?
Data aggregators can merge this type of information with sales and website contact data so businesses can identify individuals most likely to be interested in what they are selling. Just as important, the information can also help businesses identify trends, changes and opportunities that could affect their bottom lines. This is a big departure from the old days when intuition and experience were the basis for most business decisions.
How Do I Get Started With Data Aggregation?
Fortunately, there are a number of ways to start benefiting from the work of data aggregators and big data analyses. For instance, you can obtain a dashboard designed to turn the data collected on your website into actionable information. Or you can subscribe to a data service for your industry or region.
An experienced online marketing company can develop the approach that matches your situation, needs and resources. The information you need is out there, and competitors are using it. Don’t get left behind.