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Data is the Next Big Thing in Content Marketing

Alexandra Samuel, writing for the Harvard Business Review analyzes data journalism, which the author views as an important trend.  Data journalism draws on the growing availability of data sets and data analysis tools to uncover and tell stories.  Big data offers marketers the opportunity to develop data-driven stories involving new insights, to tell stories in a compelling manner, and to have the stories disseminated via social media.

However, Samuel points out that data visualizations driven by original data are rare.  While infographics are frequently used by corporations and marketers, these infographics do not focus on original data-driven content.

Benefits of offering data as a content marketing resource include:

-Increased traffic: data visualizations and reports are likely to be shared on social media.

-Value: by offering unique information and actionable insights, the company’s content will provide value.

-Authority: by offering a report or infographic with new information or key trends, the company’s expertise is highlighted.

-Learning: by releasing some of the corporation’s data in a form that readers can use to create their own charts or analyses, new insights may be revealed.

-Transparency: by offering information on the patterns revealed by consumer data, brands can help consumers feel more comfortable with the use of their personal data.

Samuel feels that some companies have successfully used their own data to drive original stories, such as OKCupid, General Electric, Kickstarter, and Jawbone.  However, the potential of data-driven marketing is not being fully utilized by most companies.

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