• Helen Pritchett

The Value of Data; The Driver Behind Everything We Do

In the run up to Royal Ascot we’ve been thinking about the value of data and how it links with every facet of our lives. Data might seem innocuous, irrelevant even, but it’s vital; the life blood of many industries.

Racing is one of those industries. Royal Ascot is one of the premier race meetings of the global racing circuit. It is Britain’s most valuable race meeting, attracting many of the world’s finest racehorses to compete for millions of pounds in prize money. As such, Royal Ascot is anticipated and revered globally. Racegoers come from all over the world for the pageantry, the world-class racing, the fashions, the hospitality and, of course, the chance to have a flutter, beat the bookies and win big.

Racing’s popularity is unquestionable, the chance to win big is debatable. Betting on the horses is a black art. Many would call it a mug’s game. So, how can data improve your chances? As with anything, the more you know the better prepared you are. The more able to react, respond, flourish and achieve. Nowadays, racing followers have access to an incredible amount of information from which to make their betting choices. The last 10 years has seen a huge improvement in the analysis of horse racing. How? Data – and lots of it. Professional punters, and those merely curious to discover more about the sport, can now interrogate sophisticated records of the performance of horses, trainers, and jockeys (source: Racing TV). Racing has realised the value of data!

It’s not only data on the horses that is vital for the meeting. Ascot has recognised the value of data and has adopted a data-driven approach to hospitality and fine dining; digging into its vaults of customer data to help double hospitality revenues in the last 6 years (source: Sport Business).

Data is big business. It has huge value. Data is vital in informing and marketing activity. It provides demographic data, geographic data, previous purchasing behaviours, transactional data and a whole host of other insightful information. The right data can make the difference. The success of any marketing campaign hinges on the accuracy of your chosen data. It also brings with it significant responsibilities. The GDPR is key in providing the legislative arena for the protection of personal data, and all data gathering, storage and processing organisations have enormous levels of accountability to adhere to.

Looking to the future, artificial intelligence (AI) offers marketers almost an infinite ability to interpret customer data into meaningful and actionable insights; creating tremendous value for businesses (source: AI Marketing Spot). Data powers all artificial intelligence solutions and any AI marketing system requires datasets to work with. It’s pretty simple, once you’ve decided on the data you can use, you can work with your AI provider to decide what type of campaign the data will best suit.

Data is changing the face of our world and impacting our daily lives (particularly with those pesky targeted ads that keeping popping up on social media!).

In general, data is simply another word for information. It is through data collection that an organisation obtains the type of quality information they need to make informed decisions. Without this companies would stumble around in the dark making decision based on guestimates and assumptions. Data collection allows organisations to stay on top of trends, provide answers to problems, analysing such insights to great effect.

When planning your next marketing foray, make sure you are aware of the value of data; your data source and target audience should be at the core of your preparation.