Data availability is no longer the problem. Accessibility is no longer the issue. The cost of acquiring data has gone down dramatically.
Neither is the technology behind data collation the problem. There are a myriad of options that one can collect, store, discover, collate, systematize, analyze, and use data.
The real problem is people's apathy and/or antipathy to data and data analyses.
It's all about changing the mindsets of business managers - specifically of marketing managers who think that their jobs encompass merely looking after advertising and media technologies.
David Campbell, as interviewed by Alex Howard (at Oreilly Radar) has this advice to clients about using their data:
From the data side, we've lived in what we'd call a world of scarcity. We thought that data was expensive to store, so we had to get rid of it as soon as possible. You don't want it unless you have a good use for it. Now we think about data from a perspective of abundance.
Part of the challenge, 10 or 15 years years ago, was where do I go get the data? Where do I tap in? But in today's world, everything is so interconnected. It's just a matter of teeing into it. The phrase I've used instead of big data is "ambient data." It's just out there and available.
The recommendation would be to stop and think about the latent value in all that data that's there to be collected and that's fairly easy to store now. That's the challenge and the opportunity for all of us.
(Emphases mine; from http://radar.oreilly.com/2011/12/david-campbell.html)
Here's the video of the interview: