Predictive analytics: the next media disruption tool

Yeah, sure — Big Data. We get it, right?

We all know the digital age is producing huge amounts of data about consumers and their behaviour. And, sure, we know that anybody who’s in the marketing and advertising business — like local media companies — needs to get good at it. Right?

Not that we’ve quite learned how to do it yet. But surely we know — don’t we? — that we simply must master it to benefit both ourselves and our customers? And we’re working on it, right?

Well, I am. I hope you are, too.

Why? Because somebody is going to bring Big Data to Main Street. If it’s not us, Big Data will be the next big wave of disruption in our advertising and marketing business. It’s guaranteed to whittle down our local media ad revenues still further.

I’ve blogged about the huge opportunity and threat of Big Data for local media companies four times in the last 13 months. If you’re a regular reader, you may be thinking, “What, again!?”

If you’re not a regular reader, I strongly recommend you catch up on Big Data and its local media possibilities.

But I can’t stop there. I keep digging deeper to learn more about what Big Data can do and how we can master its potential for ourselves and our customers. And I keep learning.

For the last couple of months, I’ve been digging into predictive analytics (PA), a narrower niche in the vast expanse of Big Data. It’s the sharp cutting edge that is making Big Data even more powerful.

It started when a colleague recommended a book by Eric Siegel. He said it’s the easiest path to understanding what PA is and why it’s important. The title is Predictive Analytics: The Power to Predict Who Will Click, Buy, Lie, or Die.

Siegel is a data scientist who seems to be making a career of helping the rest of us understand what PA is. I’ve been plowing through his book and taking multiple side trips on the Web to learn more as I go.

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