There have been a number of things that have missed the mark recently – Qwikster, the new Facebook changes, Yahoo and HP, the financial markets, any Nicolas Cage movie, the Boston Red Sox, and JLo and Marc Anthony’s marriage.
In life, as in business, if you miss the mark, you pay for it in a big way – in reputation, brand equity, customer loyalty, and most importantly, in the pocketbook.
This could stem from any number of reasons, including lack of customer feedback, not enough data, lack of analysis or statistical evidence, ignorance and arrogance (should actually be first in this list).
This could be the reason why I’m a fan of the reality television show, “The Amazing Race.” It’s basically a glorified scavenger hunt that leads teams across the world to compete in challenges that combine physical ability with analytic problem solving.
And usually it involves a map and forces its team members to ask for directions. You miss the mark on this show (choose the wrong direction or make a bad decision) and you’re sent packing.
This show is the perfect analogy for decision making in business.
If organizations don’t have the right people, products, services or resources in the right places at the right time, they could be missing the mark on creating opportunities to increase revenue, improve customer satisfaction or better serve students, patients or community residents.
And, while traditional reporting tools like charts, graphs and tables can reveal a lot about an organization, they can’t always tell the whole story, which is why a map is so great.
It’s the same reason why pirates used maps to help them find their buried treasure. It’s easy to understand, lends to better communication, provides better insight into the questions you’re trying to answer, and allows for action to be taken…quickly.
The new version of IBM SPSS Statistics 20 (released last month) includes seamlessly integrated map visualization features to provide an added dimension to data analysis and better target, forecast and plan by geographic region. Here is a short demo.
For example, if customer data contains geographic coordinates (latitude and longitude), users can now create a coordinate overlay map that shows exactly where the best customers are located.
In a few simple steps, users can create easy-to-interpret visual maps that highlight undiscovered trends or patterns in the data to answer strategic questions such as:
· What are customers buying and where are they buying it?
· Where should we concentrate our recruiting and alumni activities?
· Are delivery delays clustered in certain areas?
· Which neighborhoods, cities and states show high unemployment or crime rates?
· Where are there high accident or illness rates?
Just choose the template and data, select a map file (maps of the United States, world regions and continents are included) and the software builds the image. Organizations can now see exactly where key events are occurring, as well as who they are affecting,
Organizations now have the power to find their own buried treasure.
When an "X" equates to potential new customers and what offers they are most likely to respond to, or where they might shop…
…well, "X" marks the spot.
Don’t miss the mark.
Learn more about IBM SPSS Statistics 20 and the entire portfolio of IBM’s Business Analytics solutions at the upcoming IBM Business Analytics Forum in Las Vegas (Oct. 23-27).
For more information on IBM SPSS Statistics 20:
Download a 14-day trial version of the new software.
Watch the recent webinar that highlights all the new features.
Learn how to put IBM SPSS Statistics to work inside your organization.