If you plan to earn a Master of Business Administration (MBA), you may also be considering a specific focus or area of specialization. While there are many to choose from, a concentration in data science can prepare you for a career in one of the fastest-growing occupations.
Data science is especially important in marketing. A significant benefit of an MBA program such as Henderson State University’s online MBA with a concentration in Data Science program is coursework that prepares graduates with the data science skills to optimize an organization’s marketing strategy and activities.
How Do Data Science and Marketing Work Together?
Businesses today are increasingly using data to inform decisions across the organization. Data is captured through social media activity, website visitor tracking, online transactions, smart devices and more. Social data, for example, is a major source of actionable information in marketing.
While businesses have abundant data to work with, the problem is knowing how to make the most of it. Enter data science. As Netguru explains, “the overall aim of data science is to ensure that every penny of your business’s marketing budget is spent in a useful way that maximizes profits.”
Predictive analytics, an area of data science, is one of the most crucial tools for marketing. SAS defines predictive analytics as “the use of data, statistical algorithms and machine learning techniques to identify the likelihood of future outcomes based on historical data.” Examples of how predictive analytics tools and technology can boost digital marketing success include:
- Customer segmentation: dividing existing and potential customers into groups based on characteristics such as demographic, psychographic, behavioral and geographic
- Lead targeting and scoring: segmenting the lead list to reach the right customer at the right time
- Channel optimization: using data to enhance the customer experience wherever they are, such as websites, apps, social media and brick-and-mortar locations
- Real-time customer interactions: using predictive modeling and machine learning to optimize customer experiences across channels
- Content strategy: knowing what keeps customers engaged
- Sentiment analysis: using machine learning to gain insight into customer feelings and attitudes, such as product reviews and reactions to marketing campaigns
Consider the issue of shopping cart abandonment, which costs companies $18 billion in sales revenue each year, according to Shopify. The top reasons for adding items to a cart but exiting at the checkout page include extra checkout costs and sites requiring users to set up an account.
Data science tools use artificial intelligence (AI) to predict which customers are most likely to quit the checkout process, when and why. This forecast gives marketers the information they need to engage with customers at the right time and increase conversions.
How Does an MBA in Data Science Prepare Grads to Work in Marketing?
MBA programs build advanced skills and knowledge in core business areas such as accounting, finance, organizational strategy and managerial ethics. Henderson State University’s online MBA with a concentration in Data Science program adds to this foundation by preparing graduates with the ability to transform raw data into opportunities to drive business growth.
For example, the course Data Science for Business examines technical skills for gathering and analyzing data to solve business problems. Students also develop the skills to communicate findings using various techniques, such as visualization.
In addition, the capstone Marketing Management course explores data science in the context of marketing strategy and marketing program development. Students use real-life business situations and simulations to gain experience.
The following statistics from TechJury help explain the significant opportunities for data science specialists, especially those with an understanding of marketing strategy:
- The world will generate an estimated 181 zettabytes of data by 2025.
- Most organizations (97.2%) invest in big data and artificial intelligence (AI).
- Managing unstructured data is a problem for 95% of businesses. (Structured data such as information organized in Excel files is easily managed. Data science expertise is needed to extract business insights hidden in massive amounts of unstructured data.)
- Ninety-six percent of companies plan to hire candidates with big-data skills.
If you are ready to launch a career in data science, Henderson State University’s online MBA with a concentration in Data Science program can prepare you to lead businesses by finding the growing value in data.