Predictive Data Analytics
Bainton’s big on predictive metrics, much in the same style as the methods made famous in “Moneyball,” the Michael Lewis book about the innovative—and sometimes counterintuitive—approach that the management of the Oakland Athletics undertook to build a winning team with minimal investment using key information metrics. Bainton studied the book and culled what he could from the baseball club’s techniques.
Bainton said you should take action in four ways:
- Encourage innovation
- Maintain an entrepreneurial mindset
- Educate everyone on the team
- Find expertise and solutions outside the industry
“Target the obvious problems first,” he said. But he cautioned that there’s a learning curve. “Be accountable to changes when they go wrong because they will. We've had examples where we spent time mining data and information and it wasn't what we needed.”
It’s worth the effort. The companies that are the most successful are the ones who trust the data, Bainton said. “The reason Fortune 500 companies continue to be successful is because they're constantly focusing on what the consumer wants and moving with the times.”
One of his favorite examples of a company using consumer metrics is Netflix. “They’re now commissioning scripts based on upfront data,” he said. Bainton also mentioned Amazon and their recommendation system. “Thirty percent of Amazon sales are from recommendations.”
He uses Google Analytics as a key tool to curate data, and likes Facebook as a key data mining source. And he strongly recommends surveys. “Surveying is key,” Bainton said.