Entrepreneurial opportunities in big data

Many organizations are sitting on a gold mine of untapped customer data

David Mizer knows a thing or two about data. He’s spent the past 15 years helping dealerships manage their information. But the entrepreneur recently began expanding into new markets, including online dating.

Across industries, Mizer has recognized a general trend — opportunities in big data are ones7 that help uncover details beyond the big picture.

Mark Brandon

Mark Brandon, CEO of StackSearch, encourages data entrepreneurs to specialize in one core area and develop a thorough understanding of their customers’ needs.

“The biggest opportunities in data are the ones the biggest companies are overlooking,” explains Mizer. “My experience managing information for car dealerships tells me there will always be big companies that focus on the bigger picture, leaving room for smaller companies who are willing to clarify the finer details.”

For entrepreneurs like Mizer who are looking for the right opportunity to help expand their businesses, there may not be a bigger opportunity than big data, an industry that is far from mature.

Sitting on a wealth of data

Data is an asset. Many organizations are sitting on a gold mine of data related to customer behaviors, sales funnels, website data and social media sentiment. The problem is that this information will frequently remain untapped.

“Making sense of the data requires a lot of steps,” explains Alexandre Passant, co-founder of Music and Data Geeks, a startup in Dublin, Ireland.

To make sense of data, organizations need to clean it, consolidate it across tools, and combine it with background knowledge and decision-making processes.

“Opportunities for new businesses exist across the entire food chain,” Passant says.

He encourages data-driven entrepreneurs to build companies around specific use cases.

“We wanted to create a super simple way to listen to hours of music without any effort,” says Passant. “To solve this challenge, we created a knowledge base with information about artists, genres, record labels, influences and more. On top of this, we’ve applied our discovery and recommendations algorithms.”

The data already exists. What businesses need are tools and services to make sense out of it.

Mizer points out that all consumer and business-to-business activity produces data in some shape or form.

“Interpreting data and drawing effective conclusions can sometimes be straightforward, but it can also be an art form,” says Mizer. “If you’re passionate and committed, and if you see an opportunity to manage or interpret data differently or more efficiently than the next person, there’s never been a better time to be an entrepreneur.”

Identifying specific needs

Mark Brandon, CEO and co-founder of StackSearch — a platform that helps customers store, process, analyze, search, filter and make meaning out of data sets — explains that there are five distinct opportunities for entrepreneurs in data:

  1. Collecting data
  2. Storing information
  3. Processing and analyzing data
  4. Presenting data
  5. Assembling information together

Big data companies are strongest when they specialize in one particular discipline. Pick a problem to solve, and offer the best solution.

“Know your space,” recommends Brandon. “Know your customer. Be relentless in explaining your value proposition.”

Ritika Puri
Ritika Puri is a San Francisco-based blogger who covers the intersection of data, sociology, and technology. She transforms marketing strategies into revenue-generating growth engines.
Ritika Puri
Ritika Puri
Ritika Puri
Tags: Data Center,Entrepreneurship,Technology