The Importance of Cybersecurity for Your Company’s Data on bdex.com

The Importance of Cybersecurity for Your Company’s Data

Is your information – including your marketing data – safe from cyber-attacks?

In this digital era where data containing private information is stored in the cloud or on in-house servers, cybercrime has become one of the most pressing issues around the world. Brazen cyberattacks have become big news, from those targeting retail chains and highly-trafficked websites to the data breach at Equifax, one of the main credit rating agencies, which compromised nearly 150 million people.

It is clear that data firms and the organizations that use that data need to be vigilant and take greater steps to protect their information from hackers and cybercriminals.

The cornerstone of cybersecurity is PDR

The key to protecting data is PDR: Prevent, Detect, and Respond. Companies must establish protocols to detect and stop breaches from within and from outside sources. This should include software that can detect anomalies within the system and employee education about cybersecurity.

Using data analytics to protect your data

Data analytics can detect patterns. In the case of BDEX, it’s used to spot real-time consumer activity both online and in brick-and-mortar stores. BDEX data tells you that someone has been searching for a new car, purchased concert tickets, or bought baby food.

A similar technology can also be programmed to search for anomalies in device behavior to detect potential breaches. In other words, the same programs that search for buying patterns can be taught how to spot abnormal or suspicious network behavior. Systems can be programmed to detect threats from someone using an unknown signature. Analytics programs can also collect data from various sources and silos to “learn” how different kinds of attacks occur – so those attacks will be quickly recognized and shut down.

Employee activity monitoring and training

Though no one wants to think that an employee could be the source of a cyber attack, it is a very real possibility. In fact, the Harvard Business Review cited a 2016 Cyber Security Intelligence Index from IBM, which found that “60% of all attacks were carried out by insiders. Of these attacks, three-quarters involved malicious intent, and one-quarter involved inadvertent actors.”

Data analytics can be used to detect unusual activity on the part of employees, such as downloading large amounts of data or activity that takes place at unusual times. But as critical is training employees basic cybersecurity, such as not exchanging sensitive data over unsecured networks and how to avoid vishing and phishing attacks. Vishing is when hackers try to “human engineer” their way into getting credentials or other information through a phone call, while phishing attempts the same thing using fraudulent emails that spoof reputable senders.

Employees should only accept emails that:

  • Come from someone they know
  • They expected to receive
  • Look normal with no unusual email addresses, spellings, wording or suspicious content or links
  • Pass anti-malware tests

Employees must understand the risks of certain behaviors, such as clicking unknown links, downloading content or software from unknown or unverified sources, and visiting certain websites. Any of these behaviors can lead to computers becoming infected with a virus or malicious software that can corrupt or steal data.

There should also be proper training in document management and data management, as well as training on how to recognize and report computer problems that could be related to a virus, malware, or other threat.

Monitoring outside threats with intrusion detection

Many types of threats come from beyond the perimeter of your company’s network. Companies must have adequate perimeter protections to stop the intrusion, which typically involves a professional-grade firewall. Other security steps include using multi-factor authentication, which requires at least two distinct forms of identity to log in to a system, and the use of data encryption. Encryption is particularly valuable, as even if hackers successfully steal data, they simply can’t read or use it without the encryption key.

Cybersecurity is now crucial – and growing in importance

With cybercrime costing organizations and individuals as much as $600 billion in 2017 alone, security is more important than ever. It is essential that every company take action to prevent, detect and respond to cyber attacks. From data analytics designed to spot threats to adequate employee training, being vigilant now may safeguard your data – as well as your company’s reputation.

BDEX provides real-time data via over 700 million device ID connections and more than 900 billion data signals available through our proprietary Data Exchange Platform. Call us at 917-410-6616 or send an email to info@bdex.com to start putting this information to work for your next marketing campaign.

Which Vehicles Will Drive the Success of Your Marketing Campaign on bdex.com

Which Vehicles Will Drive the Success of Your Marketing Campaign?

The pros and cons of marketing media

A successful marketing campaign depends on several elements. You need to create a marketing plan, determine your target market, and then decide the best way to reach those potential customers. Data from BDEX will give you great insight into who is most likely to be interested in your product or service. We collect real-time data based on actual customer behavior, from recent online activity, via store POS (point of service) systems, plus geofencing technology, which tracks when people have visited a physical store.

Choosing the right marketing media

Once you have your target market, you must choose marketing media that will give you the best results. Which ones you choose will depend on several factors, including your budget and the “personality” and preferences of your target market. The vehicles you choose to target millennial males will be very different than if you’re targeting women 65 and older. Targeted marketing media can include email, direct mail, social media advertising, mobile advertising, website ads, and telemarketing, among others.

Let’s take a look at various marketing mediums and discuss the best practices for each

Email marketing

Targeted emails deliver your message directly to existing or potential customers. Email campaigns are one of the most effective marketing vehicles, as the open rates for a well-targeted and executed campaign can be pretty high. According to Adobe.com, email open rates can be as high as 20-30 percent.

Here are more email marketing statistics from HubSpot.com:

  • Consumers who purchase products through email spend 138% more money
  • Sales emails have eight times more opens and clicks and can produce six times more ROI than other types of email
  • Email is the third-most-influential source of information for B2B audiences

One thing to note is that you need permission to send emails. Every country has different rules and some are much more strict than others. For instance, the European Union recently enacted GDPR, which set new rules on how personal information can be used. If you violate the terms, your company could face fines or worse. Canada and the US also have their own laws. Basically, you shouldn’t send marketing emails unless someone has opted in or subscribed, whether the person provides an email at a physical store or fills out an online form. The alternative is to work with an Email Service Provider or ESP that maintains an email opt-in list. In this case, they can send the emails for you to their opted-in users.

Online and social media campaigns

Online marketing campaigns can include digital ads on related websites or blogs frequented by your target market. Online marketing can also include served ads that appear based on the online activity of your potential customers, including purchases or Internet searches. Your campaign might also include paid advertising on a search engine like Google. Basically, you pay Google to advertise your content to customers based on keyword searches, which captures them at the very moment they are most likely to take action.

Another effective means of online marketing is advertising on social media sites. These sites allow you to target ads based on factors like location, gender, age, marital status, and hobbies/interests. You can reach a relatively large number of people without spending a lot of money. Which social media site you choose will depend greatly on your target audience. Teens and millennials tend to use Instagram over Facebook, for instance.

Direct mail marketing

Direct mail remains an effective marketing medium, especially with certain target segments. For instance, senior citizens might not be online as much or be as tech savvy with their phones, but they are more likely to read their mail. A big advantage of this medium is that you don’t need any sort of opt-in or permission to send a postcard. On the other hand, your piece can easily go straight in the trash. This medium is also more expensive as you must pay to have the piece produced, printed (by the thousands), and then mailed.

Phone marketing

Although telemarketing has gotten a bad rap, phone calls can still be an effective method of reaching your target audience. It can be even more effective when applied to B2B marketing. However, be aware that there are regulations you need to follow in order to avoid fines. You must get permission in order to call cell phones. You also want to make sure your data is as up to date as possible. Check for things like a change of phone number or address. If you are calling a business, ensure your contact is still with that company or if they have changed positions. Generally speaking, businesses do have the ability to call past or existing customers.

An effective marketing campaign is all about determining your target market and then deciding which marketing vehicles will best reach those people. Each vehicle has pros and cons, so you must decide which will be the most cost-effective and give you a better ROI.

BDEX can help you create an effective marketing campaign by providing real-time data via over 700 million device ID connections and more than 900 billion data signals available through our proprietary Data Exchange Platform. Call us at 917-410-6616 or send an email to info@bdex.com to start putting this information to work for your business.

If You Market (Well) They Will Come on bdex.com

If You Market (Well) They Will Come

The basics of successful marketing campaign management

Developing a marketing campaign for your product or service is one of the most important aspects of business success. And without a detailed plan, you’ll never reach your potential customers. You also have to know how to manage a marketing campaign once it’s launched, including measuring the effectiveness of the different executions, whether they’re in the form of direct mailers, digital ads, an email campaign, or other components.

We’ve put together some campaign management basics to follow, including the use of a customized BDEX data list of potential targets that are actively looking to buy your product or service – whether that’s pet supplies, household appliances, groceries, or a new computer.

Start with your data

Third-party data is going to give you vital information about your target audience; the people who are most likely to buy your product or service. The right data shows insightful characteristics and buying history to reveal patterns that enable you to specifically reach out to potential customers.

Adobe puts it this way: “If you are a marketer and you want to talk with your customers, then you have to first know and understand them … The more data you acquire, the better you will know your customers, which is a critical first step toward successful campaign management.”

The more specific you can get about your target audience the better. It’s fine to know you want to target women, but it’s better to know you want to target married working mothers who live in a particular part of the city or single men who enjoy outdoor adventures such as hiking, kayaking or mountain climbing. These elements are known as demographic, historical, and/or predictive data.

Even better and more specific is real-time behavioral data. BDEX’s actionable data allows you to narrow down the list to individuals who are specifically looking for certain items or services

Data that tracks real-time online activity

One of the best ways to define your target audience is with data that tracks recent online activity, including purchases, online searches, and more. BDEX collects real-time data based on actual behaviors of potential customers. The data can tell you that people have been on a travel site, bought or shopped for concert tickets, browsed makeup, and more. Our data also tracks when someone has visited a physical store using the technology called geofencing, as well as collects information from POS (point of sale) systems at brick and mortar stores.

Managing data

Compiling data based on information you have collected about your customers or buying a data list from an outside company is not enough. You must also manage your list. In many cases, a marketing firm or company will have a massive amount of data that is being used by different departments and in different formats and systems, which makes it harder to analyze and interpret the information. You’ll need to have an adequate infrastructure in place to manage your data list to ensure accurate information.

Developing content to reach your target audience

Knowing who your customers are is only the first part of managing a campaign. You’ll need to develop the right content in order to speak to your audience. As they say, content is king. And the way you approach your target audience is crucial for a successful campaign. The keys to success are to make content that is attractive (gets noticed and read, watched, or seen), valuable to the individual and provides a clear and compelling proposition.

Determine the best execution for your campaign

This is where you will develop your specific plan to bring your marketing campaign to life. You have to decide the best media to use, which should be easier once you understand your target audience. Remember, if you use real-time behavioral data, you already know that your target has been actively searching for your product online or they’ve visited a store that sells a similar product.

The media you choose will be dictated by the prospect’s habits, demographics, and the devices they use. For instance, you would probably choose different media to target teenagers or millennials than you would if you want your message to reach senior citizens. The use of specific media can also be tracked by the data; you’ll know which devices they tend to use, as well as which media generates specific responses when later analyzing the impact of the campaign.

Common vehicles include:

  • Inbound website
  • Direct mail
  • Email marketing
  • Mobile marketing (SMS/text)
  • Social media (passive and paid campaigns that boost posts)
  • Online display advertising
  • Print display advertising
  • Broadcast (TV/radio/streaming)

Of the above vehicles, certain ones are more amenable to target marketing than others. Generally, they are those that involve an outbound message to a specific person (direct mail, email, mobile text), though online display ads and social media can also be highly targeted to individuals based on data, as can tailoring what is shown on your website for certain categories of inbound web traffic.

You’ll also decide how much you want to spend for each medium, which again is going to be dictated by the characteristics and habits of your target audience, as well as the measurable ROI of each. If you know your customers get most of their information via their smartphones rather than a direct mail piece than you would probably earmark more money for mobile advertising.

To clearly measure impact, you must either tie a campaign to a very specific offer or have a CRM system that tracks they customer’s journey from the first contact to eventual sale. Speaking of which …

Track the results of your campaign

Finally, you’ll want to develop a plan for how you will track the results of the campaign as well the return on investment (ROI) for each medium.

Analyzing the results will help you:

  • Understand which elements of the campaign worked and which ones didn’t (creative, message, and targeting)
  • Learn how your target audience responded to your campaign
  • Reveal if your campaign accomplished the goals and objectives that were in place
  • Gain valuable information for future campaigns
  • Establish a baseline ROI

One last note: privacy and managing customer data

One thing to always keep in mind is the privacy of customer and prospect data. In many cases, you can’t send emails or text messages unless existing customers have chosen (opted in) to receive messages from you. In some cases, it can even be against the law.

For instance, the European Union recently enacted GDPR, which is meant to protect the privacy information of consumers. There are explicit rules in place regarding how data can be used and how and when to contact customers with marketing messages. It’s important to note that certain media, such a direct mail, and social media advertising, don’t require opt-ins or permission – while others, such as text messages, unsolicited phone calls to non-customers, and email, do.

An effective marketing campaign requires a plan and data that provides the most accurate information about potential customers. BDEX can help with the latter by providing real-time data via over 700 million device ID connections and more than 900 billion data signals available through our proprietary Data Exchange Platform.

Call us at 917-410-6616 or send an email to info@bdex.com to start putting this information to work for your business.

Customer Targeting Made Easier for Media Companies on bigdataexchange.com

Customer Targeting Made Easier for Media Companies

The importance of real-time behavioral data and cross-device matching

According to statistics compiled by USC Annenberg, the average American now spends a full day – 24 hours – each week on the Internet. And what are they doing when they’re online?

A report from the Center for Digital Future reveals some very telling information about media consumption. More than 70 percent of people who go online visit their social networks. Sixty percent of people do so to download or watch videos. Fifty-six percent said they download or listen to music and 44 percent play games.

How people access this media is also assessed: Eighty-two percent of people get on the Internet through their phones, while 30 percent use a tablet or other device. Other interesting stats from the report:

  • 53 percent said they sometimes or often watch television shows on their TVs as well as computers and mobile devices
  • 37 percent said they sometimes or often watch TV shows through a free streaming service
  • 51 percent said they sometimes or often pay to watch movies online
  • 37 percent said they sometimes or often pay for streaming music
  • 37 percent also said they were likely or very likely to cut back or give up cable or satellite service entirely and just watch TV online

How BDEX can help media companies target customers – of both their media and the products and services sold by advertisers

Device graphs

These days, it’s all about getting the right content in front of the right people, at the right time. The best way to do this is by utilizing actionable, accurate data. At BDEX, we help media companies use data in several impactful ways.

First, with our device graphs, they can identify customers based on their devices. This allows them to market to a consumer at every touch point. Because so many people use a variety of devices, often this is a challenge. But our device graphs enable a media company to reach customers on many and sometimes all of them.

Real-time behavior

Once a company knows who is on what device, they can access and leverage the person’s real-time behavioral data. Content creators, advertisers, and other partners can then tailor specific media to that individual based on this behavior, as opposed to relying on typical audience groups, which generally consists of an older, less-specific set of data.

Better ad impression measurement

Device-matching is especially effective for ads. When ads are randomly run across devices, there is a good chance that one person sees the same ad twice. As a result, there is no way to measure how many individual customers saw it.

But when a company can identify the unique use of a phone and tablet, for example, they can make sure that ad is only run a predetermined number of times. This allows for much better insight into how many different people will have seen it, which can generate much more accurate measurements of ad impressions. Not only does this help the individual business, it also allows a media company to charge better ad rates for more effective ads.

How this can be put into practice

At an essential level, media companies have the capability to promote media on different devices. A new show that may be typically consumed on a certain individual’s tablet may be promoted across many of that person’s touchpoints – from the tablet to a text to their smartphone, as well as a dynamically-served ad on a website viewed on the browser of their laptop.

That media company’s advertisers reap similar targeting benefits. To get a sense of how these tools can be put into practice, let’s take a look at cars. Many media companies have partnerships with big car companies. Marketing initiatives in the past typically involved using an audience segment that would show someone was likely to buy a new car. This would usually consist of some sort of predictive analysis that, while somewhat accurate, had a failure rate that was still very high.

With our real-time data, all of this has changed significantly. Now media companies and the auto companies (as well as any other industries) who buy from them can be sure that they are targeting an audience that is much more relevant. They can do this by looking at the behavioral data that will show that someone is at that moment shopping for a new car – and mixing it with the data that shows where to reach them – which is exponentially more specific than the old, scattershot approach.

Want to find customers who are ready to buy what you – or your partners – are selling? Our real-time marketing takes the guesswork out of the equation. To get more information about the services we can provide for your media company, please contact us.

The Elements of Effective Targeted Marketing, Part 1 on bigdataexchange.com

The Elements of Effective Targeted Marketing, Part 1

Identifying your ideal customer

The first, essential element of any targeted marketing strategy is identifying the ideal customer for your product or service. Actually, this is crucial for anyone who wants to build a successful business.

And it applies no matter what you’re selling; whether it’s a car, a washing machine, diapers, or legal services. Any successful strategy relies on having a basic understanding of the specific target market.

How to identify your target audience

1. Compile the demographics and habits of your ideal customer

Start to identify your target audience by thinking about the characteristics and behaviors that make a person your ideal customer.

These demographic and psychographic factors include:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Cultural heritage
  • Geography
  • Occupation
  • Marital status
  • Income
  • Lifestyle
  • Type of residence
  • Education level
  • Interests
  • Common problems

To summarize the findings, think in terms of one to a few people who represent your customer base, and then build an ideal customer avatar for each one.

For example, a 35-year-old married woman with two children and a full-time job. You must also try to detail what kind of residence she lives in and where its located, as well as her interests and common problems, such as being too busy to … [insert pain point]. The more specific you can get, the better.

These avatars will be influenced by …

2. Studying your existing customers and accessing third-party research

If you have an established business, you’ll want to study your existing customers. Who is buying or ordering your product? Is it single men, married women, Millennials, Baby Boomers, outdoor enthusiasts?

Look at which of your products have the best sales record and think about why they do better than others, and with whom. Understanding the buying habits of your customers helps you determine the best way to reach them and with what message. There are of course differences between the demographics and psychographics of someone looking to buy a minivan versus a BMW, for example.

In addition to your own, highly-valuable experience with current customers, there are third-party research services that can add layers of contextual demographic and psychographic information tailored to your industry, products or services, and geographic area.

3. Conduct a competitive analysis

You should also do a competitive analysis by looking at similar businesses in your area (or your industry). For example, a dealership that sells Hondas would research what competing dealerships are doing, in terms of pricing and deals, as well as other marketing specifics. Who are your competitors targeting in their marketing? What kind of marketing vehicles are they using?

You’ve defined your ideal customer and the media and products/services they use. What’s next?

Studying what you believe to be your ideal customer won’t tell you the full story. If you own a car dealership, simply advertising to everyone who falls under the basic profile of a car buyer won’t be very effective.

That’s still a pretty wide group. Not everyone in that demographic is actually looking to buy a car right now, and you’ll end up wasting vast resources marketing to people who aren’t even thinking about a purchase.

As we discuss in the next installment of this series, the basic profile of an ideal customer interface with both predictive analytics and the latest actionable, real-time data that pinpoint individuals who are actually ready to buy.

Click here to read part two.

BDEX features the first-ever Data Exchange Platform (DXP). The BDEX DXP and DAAS platforms enable companies to acquire impartial, quality-scored, third-party data reaching the right people at the right time like never before. We offer cross-device matching, auto dealership services, DAAS, real-time targeting, and custom segment building that is ideal for any industry, including auto dealers, retailers, brands, agencies, out-of-home, and franchises. Contact us today to get your customized marketing data.

What Does a Big Data-Driven Customer Experience Look Like?

Your customers expect you to understand their needs. 80% of modern consumers expect personalized experiences from their favorite brands. Despite increased budget for big data marketing initiatives, 43% of marketers feel they’re getting almost “no benefit” from their existing data assets. These two statistics illustrate a clear disconnect between what customers want, and what marketing teams are able to deliver.

The savviest marketing teams aren’t just deriving value from their internal, or first party, data assets, they’re obtaining high-quality, real-time insights from 3rd-party data vendors to develop a 360-degree view of their customers. In order to capture and retain today’s complex digital consumers, a big data-driven customer strategy is a must.


What Does a Big Data-Driven Marketing Strategy Entail?

Every time your customers swipe on a mobile device screen or post a status update to social media, they leave a trail of data on their preferences and behaviors. Each of these interactions offers the potential for your brand to gain insight into how to create personalized experiences for your customers.

By synthesizing first and third-party data insights in a data management platform (DMP), you can create a holistic view of your customer base. This allows you to understand patterns and stories that extend beyond your own touch points, and discover truths about how your customers interact with the world around them, by using these stories to create segments and understand your customers on an individual level. In this blog, we’ll discuss several of the best practices best-of-class organizations adopt when developing a marketing strategy that’s driven by big data insight.

1. Expand Your Data Collection
Transform your strategy from first-party data analysis to a program that’s focused on true cross-channel synthesis. By combining the broadest array of data sources possible, you can improve your strategic analysis and customer understanding.

2. Score Your Segments
By creating narrow segments of your existing customers, you can focus on your best clients. These are the individuals with the highest customer lifetime value (LTV), and who may be most likely to promote your brand on social media channels and other online forums. The creation of buyer persona profiles has traditionally been executed through qualitative research methods, such as focus groups. By allowing data to tell your story, you can eliminate organizational biases about what your best customers look like.

3. Focus on Customer Experience
When you have identified your best customers, it is critical to discover ways you can improve your client experience. You can discover insights on how your customers interact with brands through the inclusion of 3rd-party data. Are they mobile shoppers, or heavily-engaged app users? Tailor your engagement strategy to your client’s existing behavior patterns.

4. Get Personal
The best marketers know that big data has the potential to move your strategy from segments to true personalization. Use your big data insights to discover behavioral triggers, and tailor personalized marketing efforts to meet your client’s needs for relevant email marketing and programmatic advertising.

5. Measure and Optimize
With your programmatic advertising and email marketing metrics, your brand has the potential to move towards continual improvement cycling in your marketing program. Never stop collecting data, analyzing, and improving your efforts to deliver a best-of-class customer experience.


Are you ready to make the shift towards customer-focused, Real Time big data-driven marketing? Contact BDEX today for more information on high-quality, real-time big data assets from trusted 3rd-party sources.

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