All posts by Brendan Grady

About Brendan Grady

Marketer, Business Analytics Expert, Keynote Speaker and technology fan.

How not to be “dumb and dangerous”!

The data visualization vendors have had a lot of success over the past several years by providing easy to use data discovery tools targeted at average line of business users.  I have always looked at this approach with skepticism.  While I think providing business users self-service analytics is clearly the right thing to do, I have seen too many presentations and reports which have just justified someone’s opinions or hunch.

Let’s take a look at how using only traditional business intelligence, data visualization or data discovery tools can be completely misleading…enabling the average business user to make “dumb and dangerous” decisions.
Woah…We need to shut down cheese production immediately!  Apparently the amount of cheese consumption per capital can lead to dying by getting tangled in bed sheets!  Holy cow!


Now lookee here….If I were a lawyer in Maine,  I would be working closely with the makers of margarine.  That dip in margerine consumption seems to be linked to the dropping divorce rate!!!  Let’s harden our arteries with a little hydrogenated oil and get ourselves a divorce!

Ok, my kid is never ever going to the finals of the Scripps National Spelling bee!  Other than the fact neither of them are good spellers….this is just downright frightening.  Long words = death by venomous spiders!  Creepy crawlies are less fun than 22 letter words.

Yes, I know…..this is a stretch.  A good data scientist will tell me I am thinking about this all the wrong way.  Nonetheless, the point is this:  straight up data visulization can show you what happened and in some cases, like these funny examples, lead to incorrect conclusions.  So how can you avoid this?

We can take the best of both worlds:  business intelligence + smart data discovery.    

BI tells you “what” happened through interactive visualizations, reports and dashboards.

Smart Data Discovery helps you discover why things happened through predictive analytics, pattern detection, guided discovery  and visualizations.

DM me @BrendanRGrady to learn more

Barbie, meatballs, crabmeat or get over it???

A guest post by the one and only Steve Archut!!!

March 9th is a special day.  It is National Barbie Day, National Meatball Day, National Crabmeat Day, and my favorite, National Get Over It Day.

Of those amazing topics though, which one is most popular on social media. I could look at hashtags on Twitter or what my friends are talking about on Facebook to get a rough idea, but that probably won’t be totally accurate.

To get a view into which of those days are most popular, I used Watson Analytics for Social Media.

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National Barbie Day is the clear winner with Get Over It and Meatball lagging behind. Apparently no one knows it’s Crabmeat day. What a shame because I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love a good crab cake.

Watson Analytics for Social Media allows you to quickly look at a range of analytics on what you’re analyzing, from share of voice, demographics, geography, even sentiment.

UPDATE: What’s the buzz around the big game on 2/5?

Let’s check back in on our Super Bowl analysis using Watson Analytics for Social Media

Since we built all these assets last week, all I need to do is refresh my project, and Watson Analytics for Social Media will update the underlying data. We can see the conversation has completely changed!
Screen Shot 2017-02-03 at 12.00.46 PM.png
After the conference championships last week, everyone was talking about Tom Brady and Matt Ryan. Now the entire conversation has shifted to the halftime show and commercials. Nearly 61% of posts are related to those two topics. Looks like most people will be loading up on their wings and hoagies during the actual game! 
There are two other interesting changes I have noticed. The sentiment has definitely increased for the entire conversation. Also, looking at the geography of the posts, the majority are coming from Texas where the game is being played.
Hope you enjoyed the update. Whatever you are doing for the game this weekend, have a happy and safe time!

Continue reading UPDATE: What’s the buzz around the big game on 2/5?

Planning the perfect party for the big game!

Guest post by Steve Archut

Hosting a party for the Big game? Here’s what to feed your guests

The game this weekend has practically become holiday in America with many people hosting parties and epic amounts of junk food consumed. Roughly 28,000,000 pounds (13,000,000 kg) of chips, 1.25 billion chicken wings, and 8,000,000 pounds (3,600,000 kg) of guacamole are consumed during the game. The question remains for those hosting a party, what do I serve my guests?

Using Watson Analytics for Social Media, I wanted to see what people were saying about some of the most popular dishes out there. In under 10 minutes I was able to identify what to serve and maybe more importantly what NOT to serve.

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We can see that wings, hoagies(subs & heroes to those not from Philadelphia), and pizza are dominating the conversation.

The overwhelming majority of people prefer to order their food instead of opting for home cooking.  This is great since it will free up time to watch the pre-game festivities!

Watson Analytics for Social Media also gives me the ability to quickly view the sentiment around the different dishes:

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Party trays have a surprisingly amount of negative sentiment.  (What did party trays ever do?)  Maybe I will avoid that this year.

When it comes to the Super Bowl, everyone is in on the food action.  Though men and women tend to have different opinions on what to serve.  This will really help plan what I should serve based on who is coming to the party.

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In just a few minutes, Watson Analytics for Social Media gave me an in depth look at what people are saying about popular dishes for the big game this Sunday and I was able to glean insights previously unavailable to me. As for me, I’ll be serving meatball sandwiches this Sunday.

 

What’s the buzz around the big game on 2/5?

A GUEST POST BY ALEX JOSEPHS
With the Super Bowl right around the corner, I figured now would be a great time to use Watson Analytics for Social Media to analyze what the conversation has been about.  There are always many story lines surrounding the game, and this year is no different.
  • Will Matt Ryan get his first ring?
  • Will the Super Bowl commercials live up to the expectation?
  • How inflated are the footballs?
  • Who is just there for the half time show?

These are all questions we can explore!

I used seven themes to scrape the social web. I chose Matt Ryan, Tom Brady, and Roger Goodell to understand what people are saying about those three. It sure would be interesting if Roger Goodell had to hand Tom Brady the Lombardi trophy, I don’t think they play golf together in the offseason. As the Super Bowl has turned into quite a social event, for my other themes I looked at if people are going to parties or bars, and what the conversation is around commercials and the halftime show feature Lady Gaga.
Looking at the geospatial map, we can see that more people are talking about the game in Georgia than any other state. Falcons fans are excited to be back to the Super Bowl for the first time since 1998.map
Next we can analyze how these themes have evolved over the week.  We can see that Tom Brady was the hot topic on Monday, but as the week progressed, more people started discussing the commercials.trend
We can see here about 34% of the conversation is about the commercials and the halftime show, and more people are talking about going to parties rather than out to a bar.pie
Finally, we can look at what the sentiment is around these topics. The overall sentiment looks to be quite positive, alluding to many people being excited for the game.sentiment
Stay tuned as we will be monitoring the conversation and providing updates. Next week is media week at the Super Bowl and there are always a few interesting topics that pop up to shift the conversation. It will be interesting to see how the analysis evolves as the game gets closer.
To see how you can do the same type of analysis, try Watson Analytics for Social Media for FREE!

7 Themes for the 7 Days Until the Big Game

A GUEST POST BY ALEX JOSEPHS
With the Super Bowl right around the corner, I figured now would be a great time to use Watson Analytics for Social Media to analyze what the conversation has been about.  There are always many story lines surrounding the game, and this year is no different.
  • Will Matt Ryan get his first ring?
  • Will the Super Bowl commercials live up to the expectation?
  • How inflated are the footballs?
  • Who is just there for the half time show?

These are all questions we can explore!

I used seven themes to scrape the social web. I chose Matt Ryan, Tom Brady, and Roger Goodell to understand what people are saying about those three. It sure would be interesting if Roger Goodell had to hand Tom Brady the Lombardi trophy, I don’t think they play golf together in the offseason. As the Super Bowl has turned into quite a social event, for my other themes I looked at if people are going to parties or bars, and what the conversation is around commercials and the halftime show feature Lady Gaga.
Looking at the geospatial map, we can see that more people are talking about the game in Georgia than any other state. Falcons fans are excited to be back to the Super Bowl for the first time since 1998.map
Next we can analyze how these themes have evolved over the week.  We can see that Tom Brady was the hot topic on Monday, but as the week progressed, more people started discussing the commercials.trend
We can see here about 34% of the conversation is about the commercials and the halftime show, and more people are talking about going to parties rather than out to a bar.pie
Finally, we can look at what the sentiment is around these topics. The overall sentiment looks to be quite positive, alluding to many people being excited for the game.sentiment
Stay tuned as we will be monitoring the conversation and providing updates. Next week is media week at the Super Bowl and there are always a few interesting topics that pop up to shift the conversation. It will be interesting to see how the analysis evolves as the game gets closer.
To see how you can do the same type of analysis, try Watson Analytics for Social Media for FREE!

Would you have married your spouse if you only knew his or her address?

Marketers claim to know their customers because they have captured demographic and historical transaction information about them but would you have married your spouse based on age, height, address and the fact that they bought shoes once?  I think not.  Why should marketers think this enough to truly address the needs of today’s customers?

Many marketers are doing a very good job an incorporating traditional data critical to being able to target marketing efforts.

Data such as:

  • Self-declared demographic information 
  • Marketing inquiries
  • Sales leads
  • Orders, payment history

This information is a great place to start.  There is no doubt that applying advanced analytics help marketers find patterns and trends while also predicting what is likely to happen next.  

Think about being on your first date with you spouse.  The conversation starts with the basics:

First Date

  • Where are you from?
  • Where do you live now?
  • Where did you study?

But quickly moves to:

  • What is your opinion of the President?
  • What do you do for fun?
  • What do you really dislike?

Now think about applying this in a business context.  As a marketer, I would like nothing more than to put an offer in front of customers and prospects that would not only speak to their business need but would also speak to personal likes.  How can you do this?

digital thumb print

Every interaction is an opportunity to get to know your buyers better.

Traditional interaction data from a marketing automation system such as Unica, Eloqua, Marketo or Neolane is a valuable source of information about  buyers’ behavior.  By capturing all interactions, regardless of channel, allows marketing organizations to apply predictive models to predict which customers are likely to respond to marketing offers via which channel and how frequently.    Using predictive models as part of a broader  customer analytics initiative helps marketing organizations identify which buyers to target and personalize offers for cross and up-sell opportunities

Great, we now know which offers my buyers will likely respond to and how frequently!  Now, go back to my first example – the date.  Getting to know your buyers personal preferences allows you to gain a deeper understanding of customer attitudes, preferences and opinions to make them part of the decision making process. Think about collecting customer opinions, attitudes and interest via surveys or data collection.  Use the interaction opportunity to capture a hobby or other personal activity.  Then apply this in your marketing activities.  If your buyer likes golf, find a way to incorporate it into your outreach (e.g. my marketing team has used direct mail/dimensional mailers giving away a free driver!).   

Social Media is another data source which can provide tremendous insight into customer opinions, both positive and negative.  Apply social media analytics to get the real opinion of your products to ultimately engage brand advocates and detractors in a conversation. CI Social media analytics allows organizations to capture consumer data from social media to understand attitudes, opinions and trends.

They key here is not to look at each of the pieces of data as stand alone pieces of information.  It is about combining them to get a “thumb print” which identifies the uniqueness of an individual.

Please feel free to connect with me on Twitter to discuss further @BrendanRGrady