How Data-Driven Approach Turns Predictive Analytics into Prescriptive Analytics

By Luc Burgelman

The field of predictive analytics has taken the data world by storm over the past few years, and for good reason. For a long time, it’s been at the cutting edge of data analysis. It combines machine learning, modeling, and other technologies, applying them to vast quantities of data to identify patterns and trends, putting users in a position to anticipate what is likely to come next. This is a powerful concept, and one that represents a quantum leap forward from old school analysis of data – mainly nice visuals and reports. But when I started NGDATA, I knew that graphs just weren’t going to cut it, and the need for the step beyond predictive analytics as a necessary solution to today’s fast moving, big data.

I am certain of the immense value in the ability to predict upcoming trends and events. But for organizations that want to capitalize on those trends and events, another step is needed. Predictive offers a great advance, but for true value of the promise of your big data, analytics must be driven by data – they must be prescriptive.

What exactly does that mean? Prescriptive analytics take predictive analytics one step further, providing a real-time element. On top of predictions of what might happen (predictive), prescriptive analytics apply actions to those insights in real time to each customer at the individual level. It is the “brain” within our data-driven solution.

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As data analytics continue to evolve, we’re going to see – and are already starting to see – a move towards personalization. And as that trend continues, customers more and more will demand a level of customization that can only be delivered by a more prescriptive approach to data analysis and software solutions that run that in real time. At NGDATA, our Lily Enterprise solution is designed to do just that, helping customers present relevant, timely offers, personalized website experiences and tailored content, in real time. So while the words “predictive” and “prescriptive” may only have a few letters that are different, we understand just how different they really are.