New InfoWorld Data Insights post: make sure your data is housebroken

Chien_errantMore new content on the InfoWorld Data Insights blog:

Make sure your data is housebroken

And here is the teaser:


You’d never come home with a dirty, pest-infested and untrained puppy you randomly pick in the street. So why would you bring into your systems unclean, ungoverned data of dubious origin?

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Monitoring shopping with good (old) new methods

droneThis coming Friday is marking the kickoff of the 2014 holiday shopping season. After feasting on turkey and pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving and watching a football game, many shoppers in America will rush to the stores at the wee hours of the morning to snatch the best discounts of Black Friday or will wait for midnight by their computers in order to beat other shoppers to Cyber Monday’s best deals. In other countries, where we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving this week, holiday shopping is following a similar pattern anyway.

And of course, financial analysts who are tracking the performance of the retail sector will be watching every move. The official numbers may not be out for several months, between consumer spend indexes and quarterly earning reports, but traders want to buy their way into advance information to get an edge. And they do this with a combination of good old practices – and new, advanced technology. Continue reading

The segment of one

DimplerI was at Strata + Hadoop World in New York last month, but did not notice this presentation in the agenda (FWIW, I don’t think O’Reilly’s conference agendas are easy to read nor attendee-friendly). But then, I somehow stumbled onto this excellent piece by Virginia Heffernan on Backchannel: Big Moose Is Watching You. It tells the big data customer segmentation story of Maine-based outerwear retailer L. L. Bean. Obviously Virginia is better at navigating the conference agendas than I am, and was able to relate this story told at Strata.

I won’t repeat what’s in the article, which is definitely worth a read. Just maybe summarize the conclusion: your marketing is much more efficient if you are targeting the customer with the exact products they like and are interested in. It’s “know your customer”, but elevated to the power of 10. This reminds me of another story I have heard of fine-grain customer segmentation. Continue reading