Video May Be Big Data’s Secret Weapon

Video May Be Big Data’s Secret Weapon

Big data is all the rage.

When someone utters those two words, images of pages upon pages of statistics come to mind. It also conjures up ideas of this data coming together to form a more consolidated and organized sheet that can help your business understand how consumers behave.

Data collection and analysis companies are exhausting possible sources of data and new ways of intelligently analyzing data to attract more clients. However, it seems that there are data sources that are being ignored, despite their popularity.

The Inherent Flaw of Video

As of now, video is largely being overlooked, because it hasn’t figured much in how current data collection works. For one, data collection tools work on text files or other file forms that may be broken down into 1’s and 0’s. To this day, video content has yet to be broken down by any program to understand its content.

The Flaw is Our Loss

However, this is not to say that there is nothing in the video that is essential for us to collect and understand. Rebecca Jacoby, CIO and SVP of Cisco, has been one of the first to point out how critical it is for us to think about what we are missing out on when it comes to video.

There are 35 hours of video uploaded every minute to YouTube. That’s 2,100 hours of video uploaded every hour. These are all user-generated.

In these videos, you will see the brands of clothes people are wearing, the language they are using, their nationality, their gender, the nature of their relationships, brands of furniture, their hair color, the streets they are walking in, the expressions they use, their desires, dreams, dislikes, and many other things.

This information is all important, and probably the rawest form of data.

Exhausted in Other Fields

Images don’t lie.

This is a principle that has been used in other industries such as sports and entertainment.

Contrary to popular belief, big data is not a new concept. It is has been used by many in the way we use it today to understand phenomena and market behavior.

For example, professional sports teams hire video analysts to see patterns of how players move, how coaches design plays, and how certain developments change the tempo of the game.

This is the same objective that businesses also have. Unfortunately, there is not yet an application that will take the role of video analysts. There are no applications that are intelligent enough to understand the market based on video.

To this day, despite the supposed sophistication of data collection tools, we haven’t unlocked the secret of how to read videos.

The Spontaneity of Video

It is the raw information contained in user-created video content that might hold the power. Remember that many of the videos on YouTube were made by people holding a $50 video camera. They don’t have stylists to dress them up or a dialogue director to tell them how to speak. This is raw emotion with raw information.

This is the purest data we can collect. Unfortunately, we haven’t yet figured out how to do it.

By Kaamil Nakhasi

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