One method used by analytics when dealing with big data, is data masking, or the changing of encryption, characters, and words. This tool combats one of the biggest cons of big data, which is the privacy concern. Data masking changes everything but the values of the data gathered to ensure that people stay anonymous and their personal lives private. Companies such as IBM provide resources to guide big analytics towards a more protected and private way off collecting data. Organization are now REQUIRED by law to have some sort of data protection in place to ensure this. As long as companies and organizations follow these measures, they get to keep doing business and the general population stays anonymous
Some people ague that cons of Big Data outweigh the pros of Big Data with privacy or identity theft. From a PRSA point of view, that can be argued. Watching people’s information does not necessarily mean identity theft will happen. It will help discover new mania in today’s world, as well as analyzing competitor’s ideas. Observing these things would not cause harm it would only help businesses.
For example, Target can find out who their pregnant customers are before anyone else by the customers purchases and by their behavior. In this case, Target is smart for using big data to better serve their customers. Big Data is just a bundle of information that can be either good or bad, it just depends on the way you use it.
The information I am summarizing comes from Mark Weiner. Mark is a PR professional and member of PRSA. He is the CEO of PRIME research which is one of the World’s largest public relations research consultancies. He also has published books within the topic of Public relations.
He advices along 4 guidelines when trying to comprehend the full potential of the future of data in PR. These 4 points are:
- An algorithm is different from an insight.
- This is basically stating that we have the technology to use to our advantage, but it can only take us so far. It does not give us understanding. Humans have to provide the final steps for any big data to become useful.
- “Inquiry Based” and “Response Driven” research are not the same thing.
- For example: Focus groups provide excellent views on public opinion but lack in the predictive insight area.
- Quantitative approaches are good for projecting but can inhibit spontaneous remarks.
- Often the best results can come from using the big data as a surrogate to surveys, etc.
- “Real time” is different than “right time”
- When it comes to PR, it will be different in every given situation and that must be decided.
- The best decision may not be the fastest decision.
- Daily PR activity may be your best research.
- Be smart in your research. Data analysis can be used daily.
- Embrace big data but do not forget the obstacles involved. There are still limitations to what can be done with the Data alone. Avoid premature decision making!
Weiner, M. (2014, June 14). Download Big Data Applications for PR Purposes. Retrieved October 26, 2015, from http://www.prnewsonline.com/topics/measurement/2014/07/14/download-big-data-applications-for-pr-purposes/
There is a lot of debating going on over whether big data is a business miracle or privacy disaster. The ACLU ( American Civil Liberty Union) lists some problems that Big Data causes, however some of these examples sound more like conspiracy theories than solid “problems”. One of which is a explanation of how Target finds out which customers are pregnant through Big Data and then targeting them with sales on baby-related goods. The article goes on to express their increasing worry about this practice when overall, it does not effect the consumer in any negative way. All it is is a paranoid justification for something that does not cause a major problem. Regardless, it is possible to sympathize for people that share this view because it is creepy knowing that random people out there know some deep and personal details about you that maybe your family members don’t even know.
The New York Times also put out and article about the cons of big data, which in my opinion , was better put together. However, most of the article criticizes the effectiveness of these big data programs. Such flaws as the inability to analyze less common gathered data seemed to be a major problem. One of the main purposes of big data is to help acquire information that would not have been easily accessible to help get a general idea. It is not meant to be exact or perfect. The New York Times also questions the growing hype of big data comparing it to 19th and 20th century inventions like airplanes and automobiles. These two technologies are different and both should be compared in there relative terms and regarded as progression, not “which one is more important”.
What exactly is PRSA? Considering most of us (in this ccourse) are public relations majors, I’m sure we’ve heard the name float around once or twice. PRSA is the Public Relations Society of America. Essentially, PRSA is the leading voice of all public relations professionals. In a way, they have final say on the do’s and don’ts of PR.
The company itself it a nonprofit organization to help aid all professiols and aspiring professionals. There are so many resources that can be utilized through them! Just to name a few, they provide: networking opportunities, professional recognition, intell, learning sources, career advice, advocacy programs and much more.
PRSA consits of about 22,000 members ranging from students to professionals to teachers. They are there to help you improve.
Big Data is a broad term for a gigantic field of information that we are able to utilize. In the past, such a thing did not exist. There was no way to store mass quantities of information until around 1996 when digital storage became ‘more cost-effective” and then became popularized.
There is an incredible amount of information out there now and we’re only beginning to understand how to harness it. Being able to use such information, rather than having to take risks or not knowing about something exactly, is saving time, money, and space. It’s a great asset to PR especially.
During the course of this blog, we will explore how Big Data is used, how it effects the business, and how it affects the users providing the data.
Big Data is changing PR in incredible ways! Companies are rapidly changing because of it every day. PRSA is no exception. Through big data, PRSA has access to information that directly allows them to better serve the needs of their clientele. A few ways that PRSA has changed due to big data are as follows:
- More creative PR programs through the use of data-synced technology that responds to various forms of real-time data.
- Better monitoring of crisis management by easily counting and tracking media messages related to the topic.
- More effective, targeted messaging towards leading figures on topics that can spread the message by collecting data on each topic and the messages that are produced.
-Brian L. Taylor
P.S. – Having a little trouble finding specifics on how PRSA has been changed due to Big Data rather than PR in general, but I will continue to look into it. More to come soon!
I wanted to cover how PR professionals can use Big Data on a regular basis. Just to set a little platform on why it is so useful!
As our world becomes more and more internet based and we focus more of our daily tasks and attention to our online world, big data becomes more important for the future of PR. Why would that be? It is a PR professionals job to connect to the audience through media to create and/or maintain a positive image, so if a good chunk of our time and life is devoted to media, that would be a great place for PR to look.
PR can regularly use Big Data:
- If you know how to use the data, it can unleash your creativity. —- If you can see something in front of you (the data) many people are visual and being able to see and understand that data can help you come up with a strategy based off of content.
- Using is can help PR respond to trends in the market. Over time, having enough data to see a trend can help predict re-occurring or ending trends.
- When pitching to a client, it is much easier to sell something when you can show them numbers or trends and use that as more of a fact based pitch compared to just ideas.
*Side note: The first website has a short clip from a PRSA interview where she makes solid points about it benefiting in planning as well as relationships, crisis management, reaching the audience, etc.