Advanced Analytics: Recap of Forrester Twitter Chat and #FollowFriday

twitter follow friday21 photo (analytics and twitter)

twitter follow friday21 photo (analytics and twitter)

In our recent November Twitter wrap-up, we referenced James Kobielus’ TweetJam on advanced analytics, which occurred earlier this week. We thought we would do a #FollowFriday post on how this virtual event shook down.

How to Follow the Entire Conversation
View the transcript courtesy of “What the Hashtag” (connection is spotty at times) or follow the hashtag #dmjam to see all related tweets. 

The Leader Board (in approximate number of tweets)

  1. Robert Karel, a Forrester data governance analyst and moderator, 52 tweets
  2. James Kobielus, a Forrester advanced analytics analyst, 50 tweets
  3. Boris Evelson, a Forrester BI analyst, 50 tweets
  4. John L. Myers, a telecom BI consultant (featured in the October Spotfire Twitter wrap-up), 41 tweets
  5. Holger Kisker, a Forrester software vendor strategy analyst, 30 tweets
  6. Clay Richardson, a Forrester business process analyst, 23 tweets
  7. Claudia Imhoff, a BI consultant, 18 tweets
  8. James Taylor, a business operational management consultant, 16 tweets
  9. Amy Groden-Morrison, director of marketing communications for Spotfire, 12 tweets
  10. Daniel Koller, an IT consulting practice manager with Siemens IT in Germany, 12 tweets
  11. Mark Lorion, head of marketing for Spotfire, 9 tweets


Most Retweeted Comment: Neil Raden’s: I’d argue that CEP is separate from advanced analytics. Also, most advanced analytics is NOT predictive in practice, merely descriptive #dmjam
Funniest Comment: Clay Richardson’s: @rbkarel Interesting acronymn for “Advanced Analytics” – “AA”; rehab for recovering analytics analysts? (just kidding)
Best Twitter Handle(s): @UglyResearch – Also known as Tracy Allison Altman, this retweeter’s bio and handle put her on our #FF list.  The runner up is Forrester researcher Clay Richardson aka @passion4process.

The Recap

With 465 Tweets and 77 contributors, this TweetJam focused on advancing your data analytics strategies. Spotfire’s marketing head, Mark Lorion, captured the essence of this hour-long, active discussion with his bottom line tweet: “Business decisions are made in discussions and meetings, and advanced analytics needs to be fast and easy to use so people can have conversations around data.” (Editor’s note:  Download this Spotfire Meetings Whitepaper to see examples.)

A Few of the Best Questions & Answers

  1. What is and isn’t advanced analytics?
    Boris Evelson made the case that advanced analytics is part of the larger BI picture, specifically when speaking about statistical analysis, data/text mining, predictive modeling and simulations. James Taylor posed the fact that there’s a stereotype around traditional BI, saying  #bizanalytics is viewed as nothing more than dashboards and reports. Evelson calls traditional BI practices of querying, OLAP and dashboards “unadvanced” analytics.Then, the conversation got really interesting when Gene Leganza, another Forrester analyst who looks at enterprise IT architecture, posed the question of whether “advanced analytics” is beyond the typical dashboards and reporting. Joe Stanhope responds with a test for the direction the data faces – backward to reporting or forward to predictive modeling. Evelson added that “advanced” data can be “descriptive.”  Mark Lorion tweeted a more fundamental question:  Why “Advanced Analytics”? Real value is much broader than the niche or high-end use cases that phrase would suggest. James Kobielus said we should think about advanced analytics is “traditional BI data evolved to answer wider range of business questions.” Best Answer: Holger Kisker, another Forrester analyst (processes), said that advanced analytics and BI – whatever you call it is not successful unless you advance the technology and the processes. Another Great answer: Kobielus issued a very good point – that we can argue which label to put on data analytics and BI, but if you look at them together, you can call it business analytics, and the ultimate goal is to answer business questions with data.
  2. What are the chief business applications of advanced analytics?
    Best Answer: John L. Myers in his comprehensive overview of applications, which include churn, loyalty, retention, upselling, cross-selling, anti-fraud, segmentation, market analysis and survival analysis.
  3. What’s the overlap between analytics and our BI, data warehouse, data governance and data quality initiatives?
    Best Answer: Ryan Prociuk said having decisions and outcomes outlined is more important in deploying advanced analytics than data quality or governance. Another great answer: Holger Kisker said, “Start with traditional analytics before moving  to advanced. Laying the foundation for data analytics is the absolute first step.”
  4. Is advanced analytics ready to move beyond the data mining experts to more information workers? Lorion said info workers don’t want “advanced analytics.” They want smarter, more predictive apps. This spurred excellent responses on where advanced analytics is going from Evelson such as wrapping it into “packages that can be used by everyone,” including visualization and embedded predictive models with apps.  Kobielus takes it a step further with examples for Evelson’s “packages” – CRM, ERP and LOM apps. The bottom line comes from Kobielus and Karel – Info workers don’t want to know they have analytics. They just want answers in the right context. Lorion and Claudia Imhoff say “better decisions, faster” are key to info workers.
  5. How will advanced analytics help w/ social media strategies?
    Lorion said and Shawn Rogers agrees, “social isn’t just looking at social data; it’s about analytics being more collaborative.”

Let us know what you think in the comments. Also, subscribe to our blog to stay informed on how data analytics and bi professionals use Twitter to engage and collaborate.

Amanda Brandon
Spotfire Blogging Team