Mobile phones have undergone rapid development in the past few years. Today, cell phones have become an integral part of our lives. Most people carry these devices everywhere they go, even when they are asleep, they want their cell phones to be beside them.
According to human behaviour analysts, such consumer behavior makes mobile phones a useful device for collecting information about consumers throughout the day rather than waiting to gather information only when the users are at their computers. For some people, the cellphone has become their primary way of going online and a major VoIP device, which makes it a much more effective way of understanding consumers.
The concept of big data involves bringing together valuable information from different sources with a sole purpose of drawing meaningful conclusions about a person or a group of individuals that you may be interested in. Related to the Big Data is the concept of data mining which has been in existence since 1970’s.
With the increased penetration of mobile devices in many continents around the world, the opportunity to gain more insights into the consumer behavior, including how they spend their money and time, has also increased. Advertisers and marketers can now target a specific group of people who they know will be interested in the products that they offer.
This information is not only useful for advertisers and marketers but also app developers. Big data analytic companies such as Google rely on various mobile apps as their source of information which is then aggregated together in a data warehouse. In return, developers, pull information from the digital warehouses for their own consumption and improvement of the apps that they develop.
According to Mike Wehrs, the president and CEO of Scanbuy, the major challenge in the big data sector remains to figure out how to get more of a person’s time. He says that one question every person who is interested in gathering big data from consumers should continually ask themselves is “how do I continue adding value and remain relevant to the life of the customer to collect as much data as possible?” He suggests that big data is a means to the end, and at any given time, you must always struggle to collect as much data as possible.
Knowing the location of your consumers is key to being successful
For the past ten years, mobile phones have been developed with inbuilt location technology such as GPS and other advanced features such as VoIP. The incorporation of the GPS application in Smartphones has made them more superior than desktops and laptop when it comes to collecting big data. The key difference is that there is some form of location awareness in data captured and mined on mobile devices. Desktops are stationary, and even though Laptops are portable, they lack GPS sensors.
According to Purtell, the principal architect at Intel, location awareness is becoming the new way of interacting with various services. Services such as Twitter are not allowing members to publish their location to their trusted followers. The platforms, later on, mine the location information and come up with sophisticated business models in which advertisers now target specific demographics. Another example here is the pushing of e-coupons and ads to mobile users based on their location.
People are living in a virtual world presented by the mobile devices. For example, virtual games have taken over physical games. As a result of the location awareness services, retailers can easily publish special offers to potential customers who are near their location.
Be relevant and avoid annoying people
Although location-specific offers are a great opportunity to advertisers, they also prove how the concept of big data can be a challenge for developers and the various companies they are working with. The challenge of big data comes in when you push offers to potential customers who may not be interested in the offer at that time. This means that your promotion is regarded as spam. If this happens often, consumers uninstall the app from their mobile devices altogether.
However, developers can avoid this problem by incorporating features that allow users to indicate whether they are interested in receiving promotional informational or not. While data mining has largely been done on computers in the past, the big data trend on mobile devices promises greater opportunities for both advertisers and developers.