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The presidential election offers practical lessons to companies planning to profit from Big Data. The data-driven get-out-the-vote operations illustrate the four steps in Big Data: (i) data collection; (ii) analytics based on the data collected; (iii) business decisions based on the analytics; and (iv) converting the decisions into business outcomes. Analyzing data and making decisions without translating them into specific outcomes — such as getting the right voters (customers) to vote (purchase products) — short-circuits the business use of Big Data.

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