Data Originators vs. Data Aggregators: What’s the Difference?


The difference, as we see it.

To start, this is a bit of a new distinction. Traditionally any company selling data to help marketers or sales has been thrown right into a “data broker” bucket. The reality is that this way of looking at the market is too simple. To that end we tend to think of the split as Data Originators versus Data Aggregators.

Data aggregators are probably a bit more what we think of when we say “data broker.” They pull together data from 3rd party sources. They buy data from other companies and throw it all together into a giant (often sloppy) database so they can brag about how many billions of records they have.

Data originators collect data from primary sources, and use that data to synthesize what amounts to new data through the careful creation of linkages between the existing data points. At NetWise we get data directly from a number of sources, but we also build the linkages between them. These linkages make up our ID Graph. (More about that here.)

For a better look, let’s take a look at why we think of ourselves as an originator and not an aggregator.

NetWise is a data originator, not a data aggregator.

We, at NetWise, know the importance of business data that is timely, compliant and comprehensive. That’s why we go straight to the source.

We go directly to the secretary of state in all 50 states, for example, to collect the most current information from business filings. We also go directly to companies, business directories, job boards and more for the most recent data about businesses and their employees. 

All told, we collect raw data directly from millions of sources. That’s why we’re a data originator, not an aggregator. 

All of this information allows us to build high-quality, far-reaching and complete business data sets. We have been licensing our data to the industry for a decade, and it not only fuels our own products, but it also powers numerous other platforms and company data sets. Many of our competitors are actually reselling our data as part of their white-labeled products.

Compliance is important.

There are many benefits to working directly with us. Our customers know that we are fully compliant with all national and state-level privacy regulations, as verified by third-party compliance and security teams. For instance, our data complies with the California Consumer Privacy Act and Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), although we do not collect, analyze or sell data related to individuals regulated by GDPR. 

Customers who work directly with us also know that our data is always up to date: We receive data through our collection pipeline as frequently as hourly, and it is immediately tested for quality before being integrated into our core systems. We also refresh our comprehensive business and business person records every quarter. In comparison, data aggregators are often buying data files and reprocessing them, which leads to stale data files that are six months to a year old.

Knowledge is key.

Another advantage of working with us directly is our intimate knowledge of our data. Since we collect it ourselves and build our own data sets, our engineering and data science teams can create customized products for customers who are running complex analyses and analytics. 

We believe that being a data originator, rather than a data aggregator, enables us to provide a better product to our clients. Collecting data directly from the source and distilling it down to accurate business and employee records at scale is a complex technological undertaking. Our significant data technology chops enable us to be a data originator, not an aggregator.  

Want to try it out for yourself? Get started here.

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