Facebook and its data sharing has been one the most talked about stories of the year. Americans are now becoming even more aware of the immense amount of personal data that is collected on them, and shared, daily. Pearl Marketing and Design has known this for years, and although we remain mildly concerned about our own personal information floating out there in cyber space, the tools that Facebook and Google provide helps to fuel the success of our business and our clients. To provide you with a better understanding of how this can work for your business, we will start by explaining a few facts about Facebook and Google’s data collection:

How does Facebook collect data?

  1. Actions and behaviors, aka your interactions (likes, comments, links, clicks, and saved content).
  2. Profile information, including content uploaded to your page.
  3. Digital footprint on mobile devices (i.e. location, contacts).
  4. IP addresses, operating systems, browser types, etc. on laptops or desktop computers.
  5. Through partners (i.e. companies that sell data) and cookies on your operating system.

How does Google collect data?

  1. Keywords that you are using to search for specific content.
  2. Websites you are visiting and the videos you are watching (YouTube is owned by Google).
  3. Ads you click on and keywords you searched for to find that advertisement.
  4. Your location, device information, IP address and cookie data within your browser history

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Why is collecting data important?

  1. Allows businesses to make data-driven decisions instead of acting on intuition. A lot of different companies collect your personal data (especially social media sites). Often they’ll use that data to provide you with personalized suggestions to keep you engaged. Facebook for example uses your personal information to suggest content you might like to see based on what other people similar to you like.
  2. Transactional data is incredibly important for businesses because it helps them to analyze variability in consumer trends, uncover hidden patterns, and identify correlations. This information provides insight into consumer behaviors that can then be used for decision making, strategies, and competitive advantages.
  3. Web data is important because it’s one of the major ways businesses can access information that isn’t generated by themselves. When creating business models and making important business decisions, companies need information on what is happening internally and externally within their organization and what is happening in the wider market.
  4. Sensor data is produced by objects and is often referred to as the Internet of Things (IoT). It covers everything from your smartwatch measuring your heart rate to a building with external sensors that measure the weather. The power of this data is its real time reporting and geolocating capabilities.

Who uses your data?

Personal data is aggregated (to privatize it somewhat) and thensold to other companies, mostly for advertising purposes. That’s one of the ways you get targeted ads and content from companies you’ve never even heard of.

What are these data “tools” we are talking about?

  1. Pretty much every website and social media site you visit collects transactional data of some kind, either through Google Analytics, another 3rd party system or their own internal data capture system. Our company subscribes to several tools that retrieve this data.
  2. Cookies are placed on your computer and track your search history.
  3. Surveys, focus groups, and interviews are tools and ways to collect data as well.

How can I use these tools to my advantage?

Data can be used to monitor competitors, understand consumer behaviors, track potential customers, keep track of channel partners, generate leads, build apps, and much more. Considering the immense amount of activity occurring online each day, there is no better way to make informed decisions for your business. It is no coincidence that today’s most successful businesses utilize online data to expand their influence and grow their enterprises.

Pearl Marketing Design

How can Pearl Marketing help?

Pearl Marketing & Design utilizes data collection and analytics to provide our clients with consumer behaviors and trends. This information can be used to make informed decisions on business strategies and brand positioning. Call us today at 603.732.9070 to schedule a consultation on how to best utilize data services to benefit your business. www.pearlmarketingdesign.com