One of the most exciting & promising areas to explore in the vast tracts of information is prediction. With years of information available on everything from consumer habits to fitness data it is possible to use historical information to see what is on the horizon. This is how companies like Amazon and Netflix come up with suggestions for items and movies you might enjoy. With the right tools and information prediction can be a very powerful way to take advantage of big data. The Data Scout has helped clients leverage the power of prediction to improve product targeting, resulting in increased revenue and user engagement.

As mentioned in the How good is your map? article, having a multifaceted data set can provide important insights. When you look over a robust data set over a long period of time you can answer some very interesting questions. The Data Scout has used predictive analytics to answer questions like:

  • ‘Why isn’t my audience engaging more with these specific products?”
  • “How can I get our users to interact with these ads more frequently?”
  • “What kind of information should we buy to improve our recommendation system to get more revenue?”

Scout Tips

Prediction is not a crystal ball. It is important to understand what is being asked and what the information can reasonably tell you. If you are a Douglas Adams fan you can think of it like asking for the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe, and everything only to find out that what you really needed to know was “What is the question?”

One of the most important aspects of a predictive solution is knowing how to structure your data and which pieces of information will make a good model. Most time in predictive model development is spent analyzing available information and transforming it into a form amenable to use in machine learning algorithms.

Data is king. The longer the period over which information is collected the better the chances of being able to develop a predictive model. For instance, asking if a user will interact with a product will be very hard if you don’t have a history of many other users interacting with that same product over time.

The Data Scout has experience dealing with the nuances of predictive analytics & delivering actionable results. Your guide to interpreting the world of predictive analytics, The Data Scout can help you use prediction in the context of your information opportunities. Get in touch to learn more, just don’t forget your towel.