Analytics, Predictive or Prescriptive? Why not Both?

Analytics and data are essential to running any business today and firms have established systems that track and monitor everything that we do. In order to have a more effective marketing strategy it is important to understand the different types of data and how to properly use them. The three basic types are descriptive, predictive and perceptive analytics. We discuss each in more detail below.

Descriptive Analytics

This type is raw data in summarized form. Examples include social engagement counts, sales numbers, customer statistics and other metrics that show you what’s going on in your business in an easy-to-understand way.

Predictive Analytics

Predictive analytics forecast what will happen in the future. Examples include consumer trends, forecasting and opportunity analysis that will help determine the actions of a business.

 Perceptive Analytics

This type of analytics builds on predictive analytics. It involves informing key decision makers about different decision choices with their anticipated impact on key performance indicators (KPIs). This type helps you develop specific recommendations. An example of this would be a GPS system which first predicts a route using a multitude of different inputs and “advises” a person to take the shortest route with a predicted ETA.

Using both Predictive and Perceptive Analytics

Both of these types of analytics must be used in order to maximize your company’s marketing efforts. One without the other does not bridge the gap between raw data collected and what actions your company will take. “Prescriptive analytics can help companies alter the future,” stated Immanuel Lee, Web analytics engineer at MetroStar Systems. “They’re both necessary to improve decision-making and business outcomes.”

Perceptive analytics ultimately clarifiy predictive data and can help a company improve their marketing strategy to increase sales. Simply knowing information about a consumer or industry offers some information to a company about the market in which it operates but this is the first step. The next step is to actually determine what this information means and the impact that it has on key areas of the business.

Tips for your Analytics Program

1) Start Small

When dealing with analytics there are many various types of data that get recorded. Therefore it is important to start small and work smart in order to gather the right types of data. Within your business there are many different activities that go on day-to-day and sometimes a more focused strategy is better.

2) Create Specified Data Sets

By separating data into specific groups, it is easier to use when needed within your marketing strategy. Data can be separated into segments like gender, income level and location. This in turn makes it easier to specifically predict and make recommendations through a perceptive program.

3) Understand Why Data is Collected

Predictive and perceptive analytics ultimately depend on humans that design systems and collect data. It is important to understand why certain types of data are being collected and what the purpose of this information is. Understanding why this information is collected and what its use will be will help when trying to determine the best marketing strategy for a company.

4) Keep Your Systems up to Date

As your business grows and advances, it is critical to develop and keep your systems up to date. Technology makes it easier and more efficient to gather information about customers within your market. When your analytical systems are up to date, your company will be more adaptive at responding to current trends or consumer wants.

At Mirza International, we have the know-how when it comes to analytical marketing, which will save you both time and money. We can offer you marketing services that drive success and help convert data into a focused marketing strategy. The benefits for you? Less wasted effort and a greater return – which will help your business grow and keep you happy!

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facebook, news, advertising

Facebook -People Use Social Media for News

In the past people always relied on news broadcasters, radio stations and the newspaper to stay informed about current events. Today, there are approximately 1.23 BILLION users on Facebook! So while people are browsing, they are tuning into news updates almost instantly as they happen. Facebook has features like Top Trending news – hence, it’s no surprise that companies like CNN and BBC are recognizing the massive benefits of using this platform. In the past people searched for news and tuned into their favourite newscaster or broadcaster. Now the tables have turned. People want the news to come to them.

Facebook constantly looks for new ways to engage its users and increase the frequency and duration of time people spend on the platform. To do this they have created instant news articles with credible high quality content to engage people as they are browsing the site. Over the past couple of years this feature has been introduced and statistics show that the average person would rather turn to social media for the latest news rather than watching it on TV or reading the paper.

In fact 63% of Americans reported getting news on Facebook and Twitter in 2015 versus approximately 50% in 2013. Some statistics show that people spend an average of at least 20 minutes on social media whereas other stats show that people spend at least an hour or more. Regardless of which of these are true, this is a huge percentage of the population using social media daily and specifically for news purposes outlining the drastic shift in the public’s habits.

The Threat to Publishers and News Stations

With this shift in the public’s perception of the News they receive, publishers and news stations must realign their business strategies to adapt to the people’s habits. Therefore companies like CNN and BBC have used avenues online to target their viewers. However they can also fall into a trap of relying too heavily on one media source because they will give up control of their audience to that source. On social media there are many different News companies that broadcast their content in one location. If a company relies too heavily on social media for its viewers than it risks losing them to other features or even competitors content that is published.

Facebook Surpasses Google

According to’s first-party data across 400 publisher sites, Facebook took over Google as the number one source of traffic to publisher sites in July 2015. The company is trying to dominate the share of the market when it comes to publishing and posting news content as a traffic source. This would lead to a reliance on social media to get their News content to their targeted audiences. While publishers and news companies used to rely on their viewers’ loyalty. Now they must depend on social media to get their content out.

Publishers and News Agencies Pay Big Bucks

It is possible to post free content on Facebook but if a company wants to drive significant amount of traffic towards its own content, than you must pay Facebook for these referrals. This is good for Facebook but this payment also creates a reliance on Facebook for traffic. As mentioned, Facebook is trying to trap these publishers and agencies into their site so that they can offer quality content to their users while making these companies reliant on their referrals.

In conclusion we can see a dramatic shift in the way people gain access to news content online. From 2013 to 2015 there has been a 13% increase in the amount of people who use Facebook and Twitter for news. This shift should be taken very seriously by publishers and news companies who intend to keep and gain audiences in the future.

Mirza International is up to date with the best Facebook advertising and referral practices. To book a marketing consultation click here.