What is the Hype Behind Big Data?

Every time you go to the supermarket to buy something, data is produced. When you surf the net, data is produced. By the simple fact of having your phone´s GPS on and in your pocket, data is produced. It is everywhere. In our business, in our homes, and in our relationships with people. 

And so we give way to the concept of Big Data. BD refers the use of predictive methods to extract value of large sets of data. Having an accurate big data analysis can lead to more effective decision making to optimize processes, reduce costs, reduce risks, and improve operational efficiency.

Now a days there exists a range of companies and consulting agencies out there which offer to help you achieve all that through the use of big data, but how can you know if what they´re doing is actually accurate or if they are just ripping you off?

John Foreman, the chief data analyst at Mailchimp, published a book on the subject to help clarify and demystify it. By reading the book, basically what you can learn, is that with the right knowledge, you can optimize everything going on in your business, from the amount of inventory you should have in stock, all the way to the best design for your distribution model.

Foreman explores different techniques on the topic. In one chapter, he puts himself in the shoes of an online wine retailer. What he sought to explore, was how to segment his customer base into clusters, in a way that, when the time came, they could send out deals and marketing packages made specifically for each costumer. Obviously with personalized marketing, a costumer will more likely follow through with a purchase, rather than if it is a whole bunch of irrelevant deals of things the costumer has never bought.

In a different chapter, Foreman formulated an inventory plan for a freshly squeezed orange juice supplier. He was provided with over 10 different orange suppliers, with oranges pertaining to different characteristics as in flavour, ripeness, and bitterness. By having a set of constraints on the amount of inventory and the demand for the product, Foreman provided a solution in knowing the most optimal mixture of orange suppliers to reduce costs and maintain quality in flavour.

Data Smart is a great introduction into the subject and can even be a great platform for diving deeper into the topic of machine learning. If you own a company or are in charge of making decisions that involve a vast amount of data and a diversity of variables, know that there is a way to condense this information towards an optimal solution.

Yes, you can hire someone to do it for you, but here at The Perfect Male Blog we believe in a man who can be self-sufficient and not have the need to rely on others. Hence, the reason for this post.

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