A large majority of our world revolves around marketing analysis services and location intelligence. Businesses use geospatial data for business planning, governments use location services to track population growth, demographic reporting, and to provide cartographers with up to date data to create maps. In the next four decades, the world’s population is expected to grow by about 50%, to over nine billion people. More people means that more change to our geography is coming — our landscapes will change to accommodate the growing population. New maps will need to be drawn, new census reports will need to be taken, and businesses will be eager to deploy marketing analysis services to this new sector in order to drive sales and revenue. So what’s being used to track us? How is it useful? What of jobs is this new technology providing?
What Technology Is In Use Now?
Right now, GPS satellites, GPS receivers, RFID tags, and location intelligence software is all employed to collect data. Currently, there are over 30 active GPS satellites orbiting Earth and there are generally at least 24 active satellites at all times. Each satellite orbits the world once every 12 hours, traveling 12,500 miles above us. A GPS receiver can tell the current time in just 100 billionths of a second.
Over 10 million RFID tags — which are used collect data track object movement — were sold in 2011, but by 2021, that number is expected to increase to 209 billion. The Internet of Things is also active. This term refers to devices — excluding computers — that can connect to the Internet and send and receive data (such as our cell phones).
You’re probably assisting with location data just by using your phone, which has a locations service feature built in. It can track where you go and what you search for, which all assists marketing analysis services, helping them figure out what will appeal most to you.
Why Is This Useful?
Location intelligence helps a variety of industries improve their business results. Schools plan where to open new locations, determine boundaries or consolidations, or enrollment planning based on location intelligence. Colleges and universities will use location intelligence to track alumni and donors, recruit students, and map their campuses out. Hotels, restaurants, and retail stores will similarly decide on site location, will profile potential customers, and monitor under-performing branches, and conduct market analysis.
The government — both at the federal and state level — relies on location intelligence to assist with updating the census, keeping communities safe with law enforcement crime analysis, managing the land and electoral districts, general urban planning, and emergency responses.
Communications, transportation, financial services, healthcare, and the media also all rely on this type of intelligence to manage their business plans and revenue streams as effectively as possible. These businesses need to be able to predict trends and the movement of a population in order to be as strategic as possible.
What Are Jobs Related to This Field?
In 2014, Dresner Advisory Services released a global business survey that found that over half of respondents across all industries said that location intelligence was critical or very important to the business planning they conducted. Gartner, another research company, reports that there will be almost 4.5 million big data jobs up for grabs within the next two years and only a third of them will be adequately filled. This suggests that a huge job market is opening up in this industry.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that between 2012 and 2022, jobs that require familiarity with GIS and location intelligence will grow steadily. This includes geographers (a growth of almost 30%, cartographers and photogrammetrists (20%), and surveying and mapping technicians (14%).
Analysts who can interpret the data coming in for geospatial analytics, marketing analysis services, and other data analysis services will also be in great demand.
Population software and statistics gathered from geospatial data, location intelligence services, and other marketing analysis services are in many ways integral to keeping our world as we know it running.