One of the biggest challenges and opportunities for marketing professionals in today’s environment is the huge and constantly-growing volume of information they have available to help target their campaigns and reach consumers on a more personal level.

A key factor in this has been the huge rise in use of smartphones and tablets, as these generate massive amounts of information that may be of use to businesses. Details such as location data can play a major role in delivering the most relevant marketing messages to people wherever they are.

And this is an area that’s set to become more important than ever in the coming months and years, as consumers’ obsessions with their smartphones show no signs of slowing down. In fact, recent figures from Nielsen reveal more than two-thirds of mobile subscribers in the US owned a smartphone in the final quarter of 2014.

Nielsen added: “Not only are consumers spending more time using their phones, they can’t seem to put them down, increasingly accessing their phones multiple times a day.”

It found Americans spent an average of 34 hours and 21 minutes using their mobile devices in December 2013, the research firm revealed – significantly more than the almost 18 hours they spent accessing the web via PCs. This was overshadowed by both Britans (42 hours) and Italians (37 hours).

This means that if businesses are only using traditional web-based business intelligence platforms to gather data about their customers, they may be missing out on a wealth of information about consumers’ activities and preferences.

“Regardless of which market consumers use their mobile devices, more smartphones are entering the hands of consumers every day and the growth in smartphone usage is driven by consumers’ constant connection to entertainment and media apps,” Nielsen continued.

In the US, the most common activity on mobile devices is keeping up with social media, which accounts for 28 per cent of the typical user’s time. This is something companies may need to be particularly aware of, as what customers are saying on social networks can be an invaluable part of their business intelligence strategy.

Conversations about their brand can alert firms to any issues that need addressing, while a wider view of social data can help pinpoint new trends and, when used alongside predictive analytics tools, can be used to guide future decision-making.

Location-based data can also greatly aid businesses – as Kognitio has already demonstrated through its partnership with PlaceIQ, which uses its analytical platform to improve the targeting of its messages.

PlaceIQ extracts intelligence from a wide range of social and mobile location-based data to create hyper-local, targetable audience profiles, which it uses to give advertisers the power to connect with consumers at the right place, at the right time, with the right message.

“PlaceIQ CEO Duncan McCall has long said that “location is the biggest indicator of intent since search,” and both brands and advertisers have seemed to agree in kind. Mobile, the media format that enables the greatest degree of accuracy in identifying a user’s location, has witnessed a growth in advertising dollars that outpaces every other media format, and much of this spend is going to location-based targeting.” 

Find more on this from PlaceIQ in their Blog.

However, this requires extremely quick analysis of large amounts of data, which is where Kognitio’s in-memory technology comes in.    By deploying Kognitio Cloud as an instance through Amazon Web Services, PlaceIQ is able to perform deep analytics into multiple terabytes of mobile data in a fraction of the time and cost required by competing solutions.

This helps it better understand which advertising is most effective in reaching its audiences, based on where they are located and the time of day.

More details on the Nielsen study are quoted in this original story from VentureBeat.

Kognitio and PlaceIQ will co-present a session on location analytics at the Gartner BI Summit in Las Vegas next month.