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How data is the new gold of the 21st century

posted 14th Jun 2018

Unlike its rare counterpart, data is readily available. Yet it is the rarity of gold that makes it all the more valuable. But even if data doesn’t have the allure, it still is worth a lot in the 21st-century marketplace. This article will examine what makes data the new gold of the internet era.

In times gone by, (and even now) mankind has always been fascinated by the shiny allure of gold. The desire to own it has led to many conflicts and rushes that has inadvertently propelled civilisations forward. The rush for data has begun, but we are yet to see a conflict in its name, yet.

To derive value out of gold it needs to be minted into coins or fashioned into jewelry. This leads to an increase in business profitability. Similarly, data mined in isolation has no value, it needs to be analysed, manipulated and categorised to derive value out of it.

Like gold, data is a commodity, because the insight mined from it is a valuable resource which plays a crucial role in propelling your business to new heights with organic growth. In short words it can be said that true value lies in mining for data, analysing its impact and storing it in your vault.

‘Big Data’ is a topic that has featured heavily in the last couple of years. Bigger isn’t always better, big insights are more important than big data. We have had more data at our fingertips than we can reasonably use for a few years now and in contrast to this abundant data, insights remain relatively rare.

Finding these insights requires different people, technology, and skills. Insights derived from the smart use of data are hugely powerful, if they are smart and actionable they will have a real impact on your business. Brands and companies that are able to develop smart actionable insights, from any type of data will be winners. An experienced goldsmith with the right tools is going to add more value to the raw material than an apprentice with a hammer.

Like gold, the quality of data is also important, you can’t make an 18 karat ring from a 9 karat nugget. The lower grade material might be cheaper, but it won’t last as long. In the gold world ‘hardness’ does not equal ‘durability’. The same is true of data. Garbage in equal’s garbage out. High-quality data is fundamental to producing reliable models and insights. Regardless of how good your models are, if the data used to create them is poor, incomplete, outdated, biased or otherwise inaccurate, then the resulting predictions have little chance of being accurate, reliable or impactful.

Data has a shorter history than gold, but it will have a greater impact on global businesses of all sizes in the future. We have already seen that the companies that have already figured out how to collect and use data are outperforming their competitors. Look at Google, Facebook, Amazon & Uber for example, the applications they make are primarily aimed at collecting data.

So is data the new gold? Data is a commodity like gold. Quality is important, like gold. It needs refining to get the most out of it, like gold. But data isn’t valuable, it is everywhere. The value of data is the insight that it can create.

Insights derived from the smart use of good quality data are very powerful. Brands and companies that are able to develop actionable insights, from any level of data will be winners.

We at DesignFort offer some of the best data analysis tools that will see your business usher in a new age of prosperity. If you want some top-notch data analytics done for your business feel free to get in touch with us.

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