Organizations are moving fast in recognizing the potential of big data, and from accumulating customer data, companies have now evolved to becoming data centers, where every aspect of the business is being evaluated by the amount of data and actionable insights that can be generated at every juncture in the business process. While big data and data analytics has been in the forefront of providing insights and predictive power to businesses, digital analytics is now a vital ingredient in the planning process, as it provides ratiocinative abilities about consumer behavior and market dynamics to managers and decision makers. As each aspect of a customer journey is now being monitored and metered real time, the role of data analytics has evolved from a value added exercise within departments and business functions to now being prioritized to enterprise wide implementation.
As big data continues to grow along the traditional 3V’s of variety, velocity, and volume, in 2014, customer/workforce analytics were driven by the need for targeted marketing, and making services and products as customer/employee centric as possible, so as to address the issue at hand. In the past year successful social media campaigns and analytics initiatives drew headlines. Tracking of online conversations to identify trends, and ongoing customer perceptions have provided a boost to social media analytics where numerous startups have mushroomed this past year. The last year saw an increased number of retailers, and banks implementing customer evaluation models to ensure the right customers are being targeted so as to improve effectiveness of their marketing channels.
With organizations having embraced the diagnostic and predictive power of analytics, the role of digital analytics in the coming years would be in optimizing the business processes from providing insights for strategy formulation, optimizing the value chain to making the strategic decision making process easier. While much of the customer analytics initiatives have been ongoing since the last decade, the past year saw the foray of digital analytics into the nascent unstructured data analytics space. Social media/customer forums grew as a data source over the last year. We see 2015, as the year where organizations will make greater use of real time data available to them, and increase their investments in optimization analytics, and visualization to ease the decision making process, and optimize the operations as and when it happens.
Making greater use of available data
Social media platforms have started churning out vast amounts of data in the form of online conversations, and opinions across numerous platforms/forums/devices. While the previous year’s saw these conversations and data being used to create successful online marketing campaigns, the coming year would witness the use of these forums as a source of incremental insights, as information extracted from these forums can be beneficial in better understanding of customer requirements, evaluate ongoing customer experience and sentiments, and identifying more business opportunities. The coming year, will see more companies putting this data to use, as automatic classification of unstructured data to common themes, and categories can lead to process utilization.
Transformation of digital analytics services from predictive analytics to optimization analytics will be the way forward for business analytics cometh 2015. Predictive modelling and statistical models will be aimed at reducing wastage, reducing customer attrition, and enabling organizations to achieve more with the resources available to them. Processes along the value chain such as procurement, supply, and distribution are now being targeted with greater enthusiasm to achieve optimum process efficiency at all levels. A challenge for the analytics sector in the coming years will be to use this sparse and spatial information with regards to all functions and departments to produce insights to help companies achieve optimum performance at levels for all tasks.
Visual storytelling easing decision making
Reporting and visualization services are expected grow throughout the year as more organizations are looking at reporting as an enabler for easing the strategic decision making process. As all the relevant data is available through interactive dashboards, and decision cockpits decision makers can making decisions by looking at the problem at hand with greater depth, and spend more time devising ways to address the problems and opportunities than spend time on understanding the issue.
With more sensors and real time monitoring of customer journeys there will be a greater emphasis on real time data, as it has become the start point to achieve optimum results. An interesting area to watch out for in the digital analytics space is uplift modelling, which will transform the way customers are persuaded to make a purchasing decision. With the new age of optimization analytics upon us it is time service providers respond with more flexibility as it could be the defining factor in times to come.