As we enter the Chinese new year, we have a great opportunity to reflect on the story of how the rat became the first sign of the Chinese zodiac cycle. According to the legend, the order of the animals was decided via a race hosted by the Jade Emperor, the leader of the gods.
In the race, the 12 animals of the zodiac were pitted against each other in a race across a river. Of all the animals, the ox was favored to win thanks to its power and experience crossing rivers.
However, when the race started, the cunning rat jumped onto the back of the ox, letting him do the hard work of the river crossing. Once they reached the other side, the rat simply jumped off and scurried to the finish line, winning the race and cementing his place as the first in the zodiac cycle.
But what relevance does all of this have to analytics? Well, the rat used lateral thinking and unusual tactics to gain an advantage over the competition. In the world of business, the same concept can be applied in regards to analytics.
In this article, we’ll explore how, by implementing analytics technologies, businesses can gain significant competitive advantages over other businesses in the marketplace.
What is Analytics?
Analytics involves the collection, organization, and analysis of data to gain insight into a particular topic and make better decisions. In the business world, analytics is a rapidly growing and hugely influential field, with more and more organizations implementing analytics technologies to gain an advantage over their competitors.
Within the field of analytics, there are several sub-disciplines, including descriptive, prescriptive, and predictive analytics.
What Sort of Businesses Can Benefit From Analytics?
Almost any business operating in any industry can gain some sort of tangible advantage by implementing analytics technologies, whether it’s by gaining insights into their customer base, learning how to set pricing more appropriately, or predicting future demand of products and services.
Here are a few examples of how some businesses in different industries use analytics to transform the way they plan and execute their work.
The retail industry is highly complex and has been transformed by technology over the last few decades. Companies often carry large product lines of hundreds of even thousands of items, serve huge numbers of customers, and have to be agile enough to react rapidly to changing trends and market forces.
Analytics can greatly assist companies in navigating the enormous amounts of data generated by the modern retail sector. For example, using data about buying habits and trends, companies are now able to accurately foresee demand fluctuations and react in advance, giving them a massive advantage over competitors and achieving superior financial performance.
Telecoms is another complex industry that is perfectly positioned to benefit from analytics technologies. For example, operators utilize advanced analytics to forecast levels of customer turnover, allowing them to act preemptively to prevent customers from leaving for the competition.
An example of this application of analytics in action can be seen in this recent case study, of how a leading telecom service provider in Asia was able to decrease customer churn and increase ARPU.
The finance industry is swimming in data. Banks can track every transaction, every interaction with websites and mobile apps, people’s responsiveness to advertising and communications, and more. This data can be used to train machine learning algorithms that can inform decision making to improve customer service, marketing campaigns, regulatory compliance, etc.
Additionally, banks and financial institutions regularly use analytics to assist with fraud prevention. By analyzing large amounts of financial data, finding patterns, and identifying anomalies, organizations can find fraudsters and even predict future vulnerabilities to fraudulent activity.
In this example of banking analytics, the Lynx team transformed the way prominent banks and financial institutions organize and view their data, helping them to gain powerful insights more effectively.
What is the Easiest Way to Start Using Analytics?
Analytics is now the most accessible it has ever been. Even if you are a small or medium-sized business, it’s simpler than ever to implement powerful analytics systems into your business, tailored to your unique size, needs, and budget. While some investment is always going to be necessary, how much you spend depends entirely upon what level of analytical depth you require. You can easily go from having simple software packages to provide basic insights, to fully upgrading your infrastructure of software, hardware, and professional expertise to get far deeper insights and meta-analyses of huge swathes of data.
For help with the actual implementation and interpretation of analytics, the simplest way is to enlist the help of specialists.
How Lynx Analytics Can Help You
Any business interested in securing an advantage over competitors can benefit greatly from investing in analytics. At Lynx, we work with companies from a wide variety of industries to identify areas of opportunity, then develop and implement bespoke analytics solutions to solve specific challenges.