Predictive analytics & marketing
By Ethan Clark
28th April 2017

Big data is being collected by every single consumer driven business, whether they know it or not, and arguably this data is most important when marketing the business and understanding the customer’s needs. When this big data is analysed, the business can start to look at the future and take advantage of predictive analytics.

Looking at future trends

When analysing the big data collected from consumers, particularly their buying habits, trends can start to form. When this specific data is compared with external sources, such as time of year, economics and even the weather, companies can start to predict what we are going to buy and when. 

By using this data and creating algorithms, Walmart discovered that the ‘demand for beer and pop-tarts would often increase in areas forecast to be hit by severe weather’. By discovering trends like this, Walmart are able to gain better insight on their customers, and can make data driven decision on what to stock and when. 

As well as helping to predict buying habits specific to the business, predictive analytics can also help to find out future trends within the industry. Data collected from social media massively helps with this, as trends can quickly emerge as more people share and talk about a certain topic – just look at the ‘trending topics’ on Twitter for example.

Understanding customers

Using big data and analytics to understand the customer can be the difference between having a successful highly targeted marketing campaign or one that is highly unsuccessful and expensive. By analysing the data, companies are able to create a complete picture of their demographic; they can pinpoint age, location, likes, dislikes and more. Once analysed, this data can help the business to make a decision on what should be marketed and to whom.

This data can also help a business to target potential customers, particularly on social media. By looking at and analysing the current demographics, likes and dislikes, the company can predict that people who are sharing the same or similar posts are more likely to buy similar products, giving the business a better insight on who they should be targeting with their advertising.

Big data and predictive analytics are really starting to drive the way companies market themselves to their audience. While most of the time they get it right it still isn’t fool proof and I’m certainly interested to see how far predictive analytics can go when looking at future trends.

How do you think predictive analytics and marketing affects you? Where do you think it can go? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below

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This blog was originally published on LinkedIn. To read the original article click here.

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