Thursday, August 20, 2009

Marketing DaaS

Marketing Data as a Service (DaaS) is a hot new business trend, says the WSJ. To succeed, the marketer must have (1) up-to-date data valued by buyers and (2) software capable of slicing and dicing as the buyer requires. Want to find a restaurant according to average customer rating or neighborhood or price or type of food? DaaS at your service. (Note that the term DaaS can be interpreted in a few ways; often it's used to refer to cloud computing services.)

The profitable marriage of data and software has been around, in some form, for more than 30 years. Back in the days when big retailers such as Saks Fifth Avenue and Sears owned their own credit-card programs, store marketers used sophisticated data mining software to analyze the cardholder base and tailor offers to specific segments. Here, the retailers maintained proprietary databases that were never shared with outsiders, although manufacturers might negotiate to have their brands receive special marketing attention in targeted store communications.

Today's DaaS holds huge marketing potential. What new insights can be gleaned from patterns buried in the data? What new targeting, product, and outreach possibilities will emerge? And, from the customers' perspective, what does today's DaaS mean for privacy and marketing transparency?

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