Analytics Providers Should Know the Audience
The final version would be something like, “Yeah, this poor French guy named Jean Valjean stole a loaf of bread and goes through lifetime of hell for it some hundred years ago.” There, “one” sentence. Lesson? “Don’t steal!”
And in the world of analytics, there are similar levels of data consumption:
1. So-called “Data Scientists” who can import any data file, manipulate files any way they want, create reports, charts and graphs with the latest visualization toolsets at will, build statistical models with fluent command of SAS or R, apply the knowledge to all available records in accessible databases, translate findings into plain English, come up with next steps, make business recommendations, and actually sell all these activities for money. Basically super-duper data geeks combined with savvy business acumen. Clearly the top of the food chain, but there aren’t many such tigers in the jungle.
2. Data analysts, statisticians, program/database developers, research analysts or business analysts who are really good at some parts of the long list in No. 1.
3. People who understand ins and outs of data science and/or database marketing and its ecosystem, know whom to call in for projects, and lead the team of scientists to achieve business goals.
Among them are those who aren’t afraid of a sick amount of numbers and reports and can actually derive meanings out of them.
Somewhat like the above, but those who want numbers to be presented in smaller bite-sizes and graphical formats to draw business conclusions fast.
4. People who care more about the colors presented in the dashboard more than the content. (As in “Eew, who uses cyan in the pie chart?”)
5. People who think that analytics is a necessary evil and the actual analytical work is reserved for bona-fide geeks. They may actually feel proud that they are the ones who order those geeks around.
Stephen H. Yu is a world-class database marketer. He has a proven track record in comprehensive strategic planning and tactical execution, effectively bridging the gap between the marketing and technology world with a balanced view obtained from more than 30 years of experience in best practices of database marketing. Currently, Yu is president and chief consultant at Willow Data Strategy. Previously, he was the head of analytics and insights at eClerx, and VP, Data Strategy & Analytics at Infogroup. Prior to that, Yu was the founding CTO of I-Behavior Inc., which pioneered the use of SKU-level behavioral data. “As a long-time data player with plenty of battle experiences, I would like to share my thoughts and knowledge that I obtained from being a bridge person between the marketing world and the technology world. In the end, data and analytics are just tools for decision-makers; let’s think about what we should be (or shouldn’t be) doing with them first. And the tools must be wielded properly to meet the goals, so let me share some useful tricks in database design, data refinement process and analytics.” Reach him at email@example.com.