Exhibitors Improve Decision Making With Big Data

by CXOtoday News Desk    Apr 01, 2015


The term Big Data is becoming ubiquitous in business, cutting across sectors and organizations. One group that is now seeing cozying up to Big data is the events and exhibition companies. A recent study by the Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) stated that exhibition organizers are using data analytics today to make decisions more effectively, adding value to business.

 CEIR President and CEO Brian Casey, states that it is important to learn how exhibition organizers can use data analytics effectively. “These reports cut through the hype to offer a practical, no-nonsense look at how. The study was designed to evaluate the extent of analytic activities aimed at serving specific important business objectives that enable organizers to plan and grow their events, including use of analytics for: attendee marketing, exhibitor sales and operations,” he says. Some of the key findings from this study reveal the following: 

Most business-to-business exhibition organizers are jumping into the analytics game: 68 percent of surveyed organizers are engaging – or will engage – in data analytics within a year. Organizers that are sitting on the sidelines should consider how to use their data for business advantage, as competitors may very likely be engaging in these activities. 

Small Data or Big Data? Findings suggest that organizer data does not meet the definition of Big Data, which entails the three V’s of Volume, Variety and Velocity. Two-thirds of organizers work with data sets of 100,000 or fewer records. 

Size Does Not Matter; Effective Use of Analytics Does. The size of the data, large or small, does not matter as the same analytic procedures and techniques are applied regardless of the size of the data set. Findings indicate analytics are delivering business results. And that is what matters.

The findings suggest that exhibition organizers are in the early stages of using data analytics for business decision-making. Applications used for analytics suggest efforts are more basic and siloed activities. The most typical applications include: General software, 82 percent – such as Excel and Access; and analytic tools in function specific software, 76 percent, for example, software for marketing, CRM, sales, email marketing, website (Google Analytics especially), social media and event management.

The most popular uses of analytics are to support decision-making for attendee marketing (95 percent) and exhibitor sales efforts (82 percent). 

CEIR Research Director Nancy Drapeau, PRC added, “Data analytic tools are quite powerful. It is very easy to fall into the trap of ‘Analysis Paralysis.’ One can study and analyze so many things. Though when it comes to supporting an event or exhibition organizer, what matters? This report offers significant insights from some key industry leaders that are already practicing data analytics offering the reader a perspective on answers to these questions.”