As a father of two I’m pretty well versed in the world of fairytales.

I’m a firm believer that they can teach us all valuable moral lessons long before we’re ready to even contemplate how grizzly some of these tales can be (yes Jack used an axe to kill a giant, yes Snow White was poisoned by eating one of her five a day, yes Hansel and Gretal’s step mother did leave them alone in a forest).

However, there is one such fairytale that has played as a backstory to the recent buzz word extraordinaire ‘Big Data’. That fairytale is ‘Rumplestiltskin’… bear with me and I’ll explain.

Data is valuable… no doubt about it… however, if you’re one of those CMO’s with a CEO frowning over the boardroom table asking ‘So, all this data we have is worth a fortune… Now where’s the money’, you might feel a like you’ve been dumped in a tight spot.

Much like the poor old Miller’s daughter who (thanks to her Father… seriously her Father) found herself in a room full of straw with the express instruction to turn it into gold overnight.

You see where I’m going here. 
Much like the CMO, the Millers daughter is thinking ‘How?’

It’s a great question and one that we could easily spend the next year simply contemplating. However, we’ve got some straw that need’s ‘goldifying’ and pronto.

So, here’s the trick. You don’t have the answer… your customers do.

Whether you’ve set up customer facing analytics tool as the Daily mail did last week, or whether you’ve just kicked off your first abandoned cart email program you’ve done one thing.

You’ve shared your data with your customers and in doing so, they are going to act upon it.

We get to tied up with our own opinions and experiences that we simply forget that the most commercially effective use for data is… well, using it. Put the power back into the hands of those who trusted you with that data in the first place and create actionable engagement.

So in a bad attempt to pull this full circle, we don’t need to turn the straw into gold, we need to feed it to a racehorse and back it to win at odds of 1000-1 or something like that. I’m sure you get my drift.

So in short, the only way to make sure that a monstrous creature doesn’t run off with your first born child (who decided it was a suitable story for children?) is to quite simply, share more data with your customers.

That’s where the real value lies.