In the era of Big Data, not having an audience management solution, or data management platform (DMP), is not an option for businesses desiring to remain relevant and profitable. Gartner’s Research Vice President Analyst Rita Sallam argues that such solutions are now must-haves for survival.

Last week, we looked at the first three reasons why you should consider an audience management solution. They were 1) gain greater customer insight, 2) get the bird’s eye view of performance data, and 3) integrate data and break down silos.

Understandably, the decision to invest in an audience management solution is not a small one. This article, supported by the latest industry research, will help you explore the value added to your organization and your potential ROI.

Reason 4: Receive Bite-Sized, Actionable Audience Insights

Do you have time to analyze customer data, deliver advice to your team, and take relevant action? If you’re like most marketers, then the answer is a resounding, “No.”

So while analysis may be occurring at some level, it seems that relevant actions are not resulting.

An audience management solution brings Big Data down to the user level, creating small, bite-sized data that you can ingest and use to get your job done. The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and Winterberry Group report that this solution acts as “an online solution for collecting real-time insights, enabling holistic data normalization and utilization.” A vice president of sales operations at a top 10 publisher noted, “At the top of our list of needs is actionable insights. Any platform that helps ‘bubble up to the surface’ actionable audience segments—and does so in an automated, programmatic way—is valuable to us. [Other than the DMP], right now we don’t have a lot of dedicated resources that make that possible.”

Reason 5: Achieve Brand Consistency Across Channels

Marketing channels continue to increase in number and complexity.

Today, marketers can leverage the power of mobile, online, email, direct mail, social networks, and more. The question before you is, How can you attain brand consistency across so many channels? It is not humanly possible apart from the aid of technology. In The DMP Is The Audience Intelligence Engine For Interactive Marketers, Forrester Research explains, “Through the application of channel-independent audience segments, marketers can more easily create brand experiences that are both customized and consistent across channels.” An audience management solution can help you move toward a customized and consistent brand experience in mobile, online, offline, and beyond.

Reason 6: Segment Audiences Better and Faster

In the Digital Age where customer clicks are counted, Facebook likes are charted, and search terms are aggregated, we know more than we need to know about any of our customers at any moment in time. We have so much information that we don’t know what to do with it.

Audience management solutions have the ability to segment data into “micro-attributes” at the granular level. So even though there is an entire universe populated with data, this solution enables you to focus on the grains of sand in order to help you “create highly targeted audiences” so that you can “converse with greater relevance.”

As I wrote in the first blog post in this series, segmentation has always been the foundation of traditional marketing. The broader the data, the more necessary it is to use a fine-tooth comb to sort through it. The Big Data Planning Guide for Marketers notes that audience management solutions have the ability to create “narrow audiences” based on “common interests and behaviors.” This solution can segment audiences better and faster than any solution you have used in the past. Quirk’s Marketing Research on Taming Big Data, notes that Amazon has been successfully using segmentation to suggest cross-sells and up-sells for years. For example, when a customer searches for a particular book by Bill Bryson, a travel writer, Amazon will suggest seven other similar suggestions, luring customers toward the “click.”

Stay Tuned for My Final Blog in this Series

Finally, it is important to note that audience management solutions include data anonymity while adhering to privacy regulations and ensuring the safety of consumer identities. Check back next week for my final four compelling reasons to invest in an audience management solution or DMP.