For B2B Publishers, “Big Data” = Deep Data


For B2B Publishers, “Big Data” = Deep Data

May 1, 2013

We’ve talked previously, and in a more general sense, about Big Data, and how it should influence your content marketing approach in order to harness more sales and revenue.

But really, when you cut through all the hype, how exactly is it relevant to what you do as a publisher? 

For your purposes, it’s not so much about the data being BIG (think volume) as much as it’s about the data being DEEP (think variety). Audience Data does bring unprecedented amounts of data to your fingertips, but it’s the kind of data and how you use it that matters more.

As a publisher, you should be able to do a better job of analyzing the data that is relevant to your business. You simply need to identify the data that best describes your audience behavior and track it for insights. In this way, leveraging Audience Data seems a lot less daunting—it’s really just Deep Analytics. You are capturing more data about your customers and expanding your ability to analyze and segment it for action. That action should be focused on growing your Average Revenue Per Reader (ARPR) and likely doesn’t require an exceeding amount of additional resources in time and technology.


We are starting to see a few examples of this idea at play:

After finding a disconnect between audience use/engagement and what they actually sold, Haymarket Media hired a customer usage data analytics service and found there was a lot more to be made from their existing customers. They used the information they gathered to build tailored content offerings to generate more revenue and develop longer-term customers.  Part of that tactic came from a better understanding of long-term usage that enabled Haymarket to target subscription and renewal offers to increase retention rates.

John Rockwell of Sandow Media is applying eMail Marketing basics to the company’s deep analysis, in order to increase revenue. His team tracks who is receiving and opening emails and automatically sends subscription offers to the most engaged members of the audience. To build on this, they are also transitioning the traditional publication fulfillment to a system on their CRM, thereby automating their upsell process and turning print subscribers to product purchasers and vice versa.

As many heard at this year’s ABM Annual Conference, data can be used for behavioral targeting: to target and automate market for new revenue streams such as Events and eLearning, and to enhance the reader experience as a step toward monetizing editorial content.

Toolkit for Deep Analytics

There is no doubt that you will see continued innovation to make Audience Data Analysis relevant to your work.  But, your SaaS CMS platform should include or be integrated with a few key tools, including an Audience Management component to eliminate data silos by aggregating all audience data – subscriptions, site behavior, purchases, content preferences and more.  Marketers and Data Analysts likely will want to sort and view reports, and most importantly take action with targeted ads, emails, content and product offers.  And of course, Integration with fulfillment, social media, eMail provider, eCommerce, marketing automation and sales management will further automate critical processes.


These tools, at the very least, help you tell the story of your audience and understand what they are looking for, when. You can see things like what emails are opened and which articles are read AND how they relate to subscription value. At the conceptual level, this will ultimately help you sell more by positioning your content in the right place at the right time for each customer.