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Cloud Based Data Marketplaces: 10 Reasons Canadian Marketers Should Evaluate in 2022

From 2010 to 2020, the amount of data created, captured, copied and consumed in the world increased from 1.2 trillion gigabytes to 59 trillion gigabytes, an almost 5,000% growth. (Forbes) 

While it seems that we are awash in gigabytes of data, so many of our conversations over the last year would suggest that access to high-value data continues to be a significant challenge for Canadian marketers.  

Where is the disconnect, and why does it seem more challenging for Canadian Marketers?

Based on our conversations, two common barriers continually come up: 

#1 Lack of access to high-quality, privacy-compliant, Canadian data.  

On the one hand, we have companies who have for years been collecting, cleaning, and storing terabytes of data who are looking for ways to monetize their data assets but have no means to promote and sell their data. While at the same time we talk to companies who are looking to augment their data with specific variables and data sets. 

#2 Cost-prohibitive, archaic data licensing model.   

While there are limited sources of Canadian data, their licensing model are often too expensive for all but the largest marketing departments and even then, usage terms are restrictive.  

 As we move into 2022, a solution is finally making inroads into Canada, cloud based data marketplaces and the flexible data-as-a-service (DaaS) model they offer.  

 Most of us are familiar with digital consumer marketplaces, many of today’s top global brands such as Amazon, eBay, Uber and AirBnb are digital consumer marketplaces. On the B2B side, digital marketplaces curated by brands such as Salesforce and Microsoft are changing how businesses access and buy a range of software and services.   

But, our familiarity, especially in Canada, with cloud data marketplaces, is just emerging. Early open data marketplaces such as, launched in 2009, and Canada’s Open Data Exchange, launched in 2011, helped aggregate public data assets.  It’s only been the last seven years in which we’ve seen the emergence of cloud based data marketplaces dedicated to the buying and selling of data assets.  

One of the earliest data marketplaces is considered to be Bloomberg, in 2014 the company reportedly generated $9 billion in revenue. 

Today’s cloud based data marketplaces, such as Snowflake, Namara Marketplace, and AWS Data Exchange are growing at a tremendous pace and offer significant opportunity for Canadian marketers. 

“Firms are increasing spending on data marketplaces.  In the pursuit of more and better data, firms see potential in online data for fast customer engagement.  Fifty-four percent said they were increasing spending in data marketplaces, and 37% said they would purchase more than $10,000 of data there.”

Source:  pitney-bowes-forrester-data-us.pdf ( 

Top 10 Reasons for marketers to explore cloud based data marketplaces in 2022 

1: Try before you buy to minimize risk 

Marketplaces offer the ability for companies to try data samples to test the data fit/applicability for company goals before investing in a purchase.  This includes full data documentation and variable descriptors.

2: Compare data to test value

Companies can easily compare and test multiple data vendors in the same category.  Let’s say you are looking for weather data, sample, and test various vendors for a particular use case.  

3: Enhanced technical capabilities 

Most marketplaces enable data providers to deliver their data products via APIs, something they may not have the inhouse expertise to do, and vice versa, they allow buyers to access data in real-time. 

4: Minimize data cutting errors

Accessing data from one source allows for the control of the data being shared because it is processed once.  The focus is on trying to share data in a way that is consistent for all customers and any data errors can be corrected on-the-fly. 

5: Consistency in format   

Marketplaces do a great job in making data product content, and licensing requirements, consistent between all types of data vendors that helps eliminate a lot of the groundwork required in the past to acquire data.  

6: Frequent updates

Marketplaces allow for data updates to happen automatically on the data provider’s side minimizing any effort on the buyer’s side to maintain data updates and versioning.  

7: Storage

The data is stored on the marketplace and customers can access data whenever they want with assigned login credentials. Furthermore, through marketplace ODBC connections, companies can connect directly to the datasets they license for analysis in third-party apps such as Tableau, Alteryx, etc.  This eliminates any storage requirements on the buyer’s side. 

8: Data catalogue management 

Paid marketplace clients have access to their own account where they often store their company’s own internal data for dissemination across their organization.  Data these companies license from third-party data vendors, like CiG, also gets stored in their own account making it easy for their database admin to provide access to users across the organization.  

9: Transparent pricing

Data product pricing is transparent in most marketplaces enabling companies to quickly assess if acquiring the data fits within their budgets.  

10: No barriers

Marketplaces bring down barriers to accessing data.  Organizations don’t need to be a customer of a marketplace to take advantage of their many benefits; they get reader accounts assigned to them from data vendors that enables them to use much of the same functionality as marketplace paid clients. 

 In 2021, as part of our DaaS model with the relaunch of intelligentVIEW, we’ve made our data available for clients through the Snowflake data marketplace. 

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