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  • Blog Post: The Value of Small: Why Small Data Matters Just As Much As Big Data

    In a world of big data, it's easy to forget about small data: those lower volume, more focused data sets. Using these smaller data sets can be just as relevant for your business as the insights gleaned from analyzing big data. For many of your business's day-to-day challenges, the insights gleaned...
  • Blog Post: Four Mysteries Big Data Could Solve, but Shouldn't

    Proper analysis of big data can solve for many things: predicting customer behavior, streamlining supply lines, and creating highly targeted offers that drive sales. As computing power and analytic prowess grows, problems once considered "unsolvable" will quickly become mundane (though fundamental...
  • Blog Post: On the verge of a breakthrough: how the cloud helps your business find insights in big data

    While big data enters the everyday lexicon, it begins to conjure the image of a Sasquatch-style beast made of infinite strings of numbers. But big data doesn't have to be intimidating. Your business can harness the big data haystack to quickly find the needle of insight contained inside. For example...
  • Blog Post: How is business technology like a human brain?

    You might say something nerdy about the big data revolution or perhaps the latest simulation of the brain … But no, the answer we are going for is: we only use a small fraction of both.* According to Brian Moran , the average business uses only about 30% of the capabilities they already...
  • Blog Post: 2014 Predictions and Resolutions

    Big things happened in tech in 2013, and we can only expect more to come in 2014. We’ve assembled some of the most important areas businesses will want to consider and some easy resolutions you can make for your business to prepare for what’s coming. Strap in and hang on. The future is...
  • Blog Post: Big Data, Simple Guidance

    Big data is very simple—it’s an extremely large set of data—but the confusing part is knowing what to do with all of that information. Big data can either be a tremendous asset to your business or a time-sapping mire. David McJannet , VP of marketing for Microsoft partner Hortonworks...
  • Blog Post: Big Data Solutions Powering the Music Industry

    Big data, well-assembled, can provide a comprehensive picture of a business’ current landscape. It’s the smart business, however, that can manipulate that data and put it to work for them in the future. The music industry had to smarten up before many other industries. They learned to...
  • Blog Post: The Give and Take Between Brands, Consumers, and Their Data

    You have likely seen the New York Times dialect quiz that’s popping up in Facebook and Twitter streams all across the web right now—a 25-question quiz that estimates your geographic origins based on your pronunciations and word choices. The tool crunches people’s responses based on...
  • Blog Post: Making Sense of Consumer Data in the World of Retail

    Last week we looked at an example of the consumerization of big data from the publishing world , examining the relationship between brands, consumers, and their data. Today we take a look at the retail industry and the ways retailers can use data sets to anticipate customer behavior. Shish Shridhar...
  • Blog Post: The Autonomy of Marketing with Big Data

    We spoke to Jeff Marcoux, Senior Product Marketing Manager for Dynamics CRM, about how big data and data insights have changed marketing. He outlined three ways that companies can use big data to reimagine their marketing efforts. He also outlined an all-encompassing rule when using data insights...
  • Blog Post: Storytelling with data: how your business can turn information into compelling tales

    In our interview with Jeff Marcoux, Senior Product Marketing Manager for Microsoft Dynamics CRM, he mentioned an excellent mantra for businesses interested in big data: “large data makes graphs, but significant data tells a story .” Businesses looking to harness data insights should be ready...
  • Blog Post: Autonomous Marketing: Using data to perfectly personalize marketing efforts

    Personalization is the gold standard for marketing efforts. If you can connect with a customer on a personal level and demonstrate that you understand your audience, the customer is far more likely to respond to your marketing campaigns. It may seem like a daunting task to crunch that much customer information...
  • Blog Post: Business Intelligence: “The Eyes and Ears of Your Business”

    Businesses are collecting more data than ever before, and technology is making that process increasingly easier and more affordable. The challenge for business owners is 1) how to quickly turn that raw data into actionable business insights, and 2) how to give more people within an organization access...
  • Blog Post: Delta, Data, and Microsoft Dynamics

    How do you take regular customer behavior and turn it into an opportunity to gather insights for your business’ operations? Delta Air Lines—pioneers of the paperless cockpit —realized they had an enormous opportunity to gather insights about their customers. By tapping into data from...
  • Blog Post: Equipping CFOs with the Power of Actionable Insight

    CFOs have the power to turn big data into actionable insight that carries real business impact. The key, according to Pepijn Richter and Yvonne Haarloev, Director of Product Marketing and Senior Product Marketing Manager for Microsoft Dynamics AX, is bringing that data to life. This entails understanding...
  • Blog Post: The Human Side of Autonomous Marketing

    How do you retain the creative side of marketing when big data and autonomous marketing inevitably change the way marketers work? Data insights enhance the efficacy of your marketing efforts; however, human input is always necessary to decipher big data. Autonomous marketing, used to enable marketers...
  • Blog Post: Big Data and the Digital Universe

  • Blog Post: Putting Analytics in the Hands of the Consumer

    As business intelligence tools become more accessible to the consumer, more individuals are capable of using analytics to delve into topics they’re interested in. And as they develop these skills, businesses will inevitably benefit from employees who are capable of uncovering and applying strategic...
  • Blog Post: Location Intelligence: Understanding Your Customers Requires Knowing Where They Are

    Does your maps app have “access to your current location”? Are your Instagram photos forming a Photo Map? Even social networks like Facebook and Twitter serve as platforms to broadcast where you are and what you’re doing. Millions of Americans leave similar digital trails every second...
  • Blog Post: At Microsoft, the Internet of Things Powers Smart Buildings

    Five hundred acres. Over 125 buildings. One massive energy bill. Something big had to change on the Microsoft campus—we needed to explore what building inefficiencies were causing such a large energy bill. Fixing this problem with “smart” technology was a unique business opportunity...
  • Blog Post: Developing a Data Culture for a Better Bottom Line

    Making data accessible for all employees—or, creating a “ data culture ”—is the vision of Microsoft's CEO, Satya Nadella. And whether yours is a large tech company or a five-person family business, it's also a vision that can increase your business's value. That's...
  • Blog Post: Unexpected Data Requires Unexpected Visualization

    One key challenge for companies that have begun to collect large amounts of data is analyzing and visualizing it in a way that produces insights. Data is worthless if you can’t use it to improve your business, but the disruptive insights that data produces could remain hidden if you aren’t...
  • Blog Post: Environmental Insight That Helps the Bottom Line

    We’ve talked a lot about data—consumer data, to be specific—and how transforming it into insight could mean either savings, profit, or both for your business. But according to the Computational Ecology and Environmental Science Group (CEES), a part of Microsoft’s Cambridge Research...
  • Blog Post: Answering the Call for “New-School” Marketing Concepts

    In his new book, Absolute Value , Stanford Professor Itamar Simonson sets up the question: what does it mean when the traditional notions of marketing don’t stand up in 21 st century? In doing so, he reveals what really influences customers today and offers a new framework to challenge those notions...
  • Blog Post: A Sustainable City Is A Smart City—And It’s Built By Local Businesses

    Although cities account for only 2 percent of Earth’s surface area, they represent more than 80 percent of the world’s combined GDP. For some government officials and agencies, urbanization is considered progress; for others the impending strain on infrastructure and resources presents an...