What is Open Data?

Open data is any data that is made available by government, business or individuals, to the public, and that can be freely analysed, used and republished or redistributed, without the restrictions of copyright, patents or other conditional controls.

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What are the benefits of Open Data?

Open data sources are still a largely untapped resource for both marketers and business people.

Many government bodies, businesses and individuals collect and publish a broad range of data to perform their work and to be transparent to the public.

This data can be used to help profile and highly target residential households for communications and marketing, and because residential addresses identified by open data is anonymous, it is not subject to GDPR regulation.

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How do I access Open Data?

Until now cutting-edge marketers and large business accessed open data sources by hiring a Data Consultant or employing a Data Analyst to create bespoke reports.

This could be costly.

With MyOpenData, Open Data is accessed directly by the member at low-cost, using a self-service website.

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How can I use Open Data for Business?

Some examples:

  1. Identify potential visitors to tourism and leisure venues within a one-hour car journey of the destination.
  2. Upload your existing customer data records, profile them, and find look-a-likes for target marketing campaigns.
  3. Choose the correct business location for new premises or franchises by filtering multiple geographic searches to see the potential overlap between existing areas.
  4. Drive new footfall for your retail business by marketing to all addresses within 200m of the route of your shops nearest public transport stopping point.
  5. Contact residential addresses in danger of flooding.
  6. Identify and sell services to houses using off-grid energy supplies.
  7. Reduce marketing overheads by identifying geographical and demographic areas of low responses and eliminating future wastage.
  8. Improve online traffic by using hyper personalised direct mail to cut through digital ‘noise’.
  9. Test new product or service offerings on differing audience segments, to establish the best return on investment.
  10. Identify areas of deprivation and provide them with essential health service information.
  11. Create awareness of an activity or event within a defined geographic or demographic area, for example: for planning permission, or a for local sporting or hobby activities.
  12. Research addresses that are likely to have children and recruit potential students for private schools and higher education.
  13. Understand the traffic flow into and out of a geographic area over time to enable the creation of new and expand existing transportation services.
  14. Predict areas of changing residential status to enable promotion of future house moves.

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What issues does Open Data have and how does MyOpenData solve them?

Many organisations provide Open Data… a quick search on Google will identify the most popular.

The issue is not that these data sets are not available, it is that 1) they are not available in one place, 2) they usually required a Data Consultant or a Data Analyst who is employed by the user to create a bespoke solution, and 3) the structure of the data was poor.

MyOpenData pulls multiple Open Data sources into one place.

Membership allows any user to research, upload, profile, combine, question, and use Open Data for their business and society, without necessarily hiring a Data Consultant or employing a Data Analyst.

The structure issue is solved by ensuring the Open Data used is in a suitable authenticated format prior to being added to the MyOpenData Library.

The skills issue is solved by offering menu driven questioning of the Open Data, negating the need for advanced computer skills.

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What is the difference between Open Data and Big Data?

Data can be Open Data if it is available to everyone – ie: the public – under a free licence.

Data can be Big Data if it is typically big beyond the ability of common software to handle it, but Big Data is not necessarily Open Data, for example, both Facebook and Google have Big Data, but it is privately held, whereas the UK Office for National Statistics holds both Open Data and Big Data.

Most Open Data is multiple sets of Small Data that can be correlated and combined to increase their analysis and research value.

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What is the difference between Open Data and Open Source?

Open Data refers to data records that have been made open to the public. Open source usually refers to software code that has been made open so that technology, web and app developers develop and use it.

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What is the difference between Open Data and Public Data?

The difference between Public Data and Open Data lies in the way it is released:

Open Data is released to the public with permission for re-use. It is released in open data format with an authoritative source and a license that allows any user to re-use, correlate and combine the data with other data sets, without any restrictions.

Public data is released to the public with some form of restriction placed on it re-use, ie: it is in the Public Domain, but has some form of proprietary instructions on it, such as having to release any subsequent data in particular proprietary data format, or to be released within time parameters, or with licence payment for re-use.

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Are there any regulations for Open Data?

No. Open Data is anonymous and can therefore be used without reference to GDPR regulations that cover ‘Addressed Data’.

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Can names be added to MyOpenData search results?

Yes. This service is part of the Pay As You Go features offered to MyOpenData members. MyOpenData Limited works with a GDPR compliant name supplier, and these can be appended to your data.

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What is the difference between Open Data and ‘Addressed data’?

‘Addressed data’ has an individual’s name and is usually bought in from an external data supplier who has obtained the individual’s permission to contact them for information, sales process and/or marketing under the GDPR legislation.

Alternatively, the ‘addressed data’ is part of an existing customer and prospect database, the the business, charity or governmental body has obtained the individual’s permission to contact them for information, sales process and/or marketing under the GDPR legislation.

Open data is anonymous; therefore, it has no name attached to each address. This means that GDPR legislation does not apply to it.

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