Doesn't matter what the bureau of statistics says. The CIO needs big data so he/she can be part of the conversation at the next conference where they can discuss their visions.
As we all know Information Technology is not just about business processes and communication anymore and these days IT needs to "partner with the business" to add value. While CIO's at high tech companies or Election campaigns have some demonstratable success with 'big data' - the CIO at your local cornershop wants to emulate that succcess.
This requires a high level of 'agility' to jump onto the technological bandwagon - and quickly jump off and distance oneself if it turns out to be a dud.
Deriving information and knowledge (or business intelligence) from data has always been done. Big Data will help you to drive innovation and find solutions to tomorrows problems... Genius Sales.
On the upside, as storage capacity grows - big data - will just become -data- again. And as CPU power icreases you wont even need Watson anymore. Every idiot will be able to gain some sort of insight from any data source he/she can get her hands on.
In my personal opinion "Big Data" is just a stupid ambigious term - so IT vendors and customers can sit on the same table, have a conversation, but take about completely different things - without even knowing it.