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The ROI of Predictive Analytics for Marketing

Author's avatar By Dave Chaffey 16 Mar, 2017
Essential Essential topic

Chart of the Day: Predictive Analytics Users Get Better Results

Predictive Analytics isn't a new marketing technique, but interest in it has increased with the hype around using Artificial Intelligence for Marketing. This typically involves using Machine Learning, a key AI technique for marketing, by analysis of historical results of campaigns to inform future targeting and creative.

In this research, analysts Aberdeen Group review the impact of Predictive analytics on different ROI metrics as presented in the chart below.

But, before we take a look at the results, what is predictive analytics? Aberdeen define  predictive analytics as:

'A technology allowing firms to analyze structured and unstructured data, be it captured in the past or in real time. Such analysis reveals key trends and correlations while also predicting the likelihood of things such as customer churn'.

This is a broad definition since most marketing applications focus on analysis of structured, historical data to inform targeting of future marketing activities. This definition includes unstructured data, but the research doesn't give examples of what those might be, but one is analysis of creative like subject lines in email to develop copy for future emails, for example in the Phrasee service. Others could include review of customer service queries or social media monitoring to inform future responses.

The more general Wikipedia definition of Predictive Analytics is closer to the general understanding of predictive analytics in marketing:

"In business, predictive models exploit patterns found in historical and transactional data to identify risks and opportunities. Models capture relationships among many factors to allow assessment of risk or potential associated with a particular set of conditions, guiding decision making for candidate transactions".

So, turning to the research, the chart shows how users of predictive analytics achieve improved return on investment measured by different KPIs of business impact.

Specific technologies covered in more detail in the research include:

  • Database management (e.g. for better targeted emails)
  • Recommendation engines (e.g. for on-site personalisation)
  • Real-time decision assistance and guidance (e.g. for customer service)

About the research

Author's avatar

By Dave Chaffey

Digital strategist Dr Dave Chaffey is co-founder and Content Director of online marketing training platform and publisher Smart Insights. 'Dr Dave' is known for his strategic, but practical, data-driven advice. He has trained and consulted with many business of all sizes in most sectors. These include large international B2B and B2C brands including 3M, BP, Barclaycard, Dell, Confused.com, HSBC, Mercedes-Benz, Microsoft, M&G Investment, Rentokil Initial, O2, Royal Canin (Mars Group) plus many smaller businesses. Dave is editor of the templates, guides and courses in our digital marketing resource library used by our Business members to plan, manage and optimize their marketing. Free members can access our free sample templates here. Dave is also keynote speaker, trainer and consultant who is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Digital Marketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. In 2004 he was recognised by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing. My personal site, DaveChaffey.com, lists my latest Digital marketing and E-commerce books and support materials including a digital marketing glossary. Please connect on LinkedIn to receive updates or ask me a question.

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