Demystifying Analytics – Part 1 – What is it and why do it?

Michelle Bidwell
August 13, 2012

Analytics it’s the in thing – what with social media exploding, big data and sexy statisticians (who would have thought!).
But what is analytics? Is it the be all and end all it’s cracked up to be? (Pretty much yes – but I could be a little biased!)
In a nutshell, analytics is all about making sense/gaining insight about the world you’re in by exploring, summarising and modelling data. It includes such things as:

  • Predicting the likelihood a customer will purchase a particular product
  • Forecasting how much, where & when stock is required
  • Determining the triggers that will cause a customer to leave and what will keep them
  • Determining the impact of different scenarios
  • Finding the optimal price of a product/service
  • Predicting the likelihood that an insurance claim is fraudulent
  • Calculating the number of call centre reps that are required at any given time.

If it’s done right (and hopefully the next few posts will help), analytics can help you to meet your customers/clients’ needs by giving them the right thing at the right time, in the right way.
It can help you to not only find which customers are high value but which ones could become high value and what you need to do to get them there. Analytics can help identify emerging trends and anticipate changes in behaviour enabling better decisions and giving you a competitive edge.

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