You can’t make consistent progress and grow your business without analyzing your decisions. Naturally, a lot of that reflection comes from various analytics tools, measuring who you’ve interacted with, what were the most profitable customer acquisition channels, what made a difference to your team’s productivity, and much more.
The problem is that most analytics tools are designed to track data and suggest solutions based solely on your past performance, which often fails to account for velocity and the internal rate of change.
What you need to actually prepare for the future is a tool that can predict it with a reasonable degree of accuracy. In other words, you’re looking for a predictive analytics platform.
Why Use Predictive Analytics?
Predictive analytics is one of the most advanced types of analytics available to companies today. Instead of simply reflecting and categorizing past data, it makes predictive judgements based on statistical models and algorithms.
Predictive analytics still uses your historical data to train its algorithms, but its goal is to assess the likeliness of future events rather than accurately display your past achievements.
In a business context, there are a variety of use cases for which you can use predictive analytics:
- Reducing customer churn
- Identifying the best pricing model
- Forecasting sales
- Optimally growing your team
To be able to make these sorts of decisions, you first need to choose your predictive analytics platform and train its statistical models. The good news is the selection of predictive software gets wider every year, from established companies like IBM and Oracle to small but focused tech startups.
Let’s take a look at the best predictive analytics platforms in 2021. Read them right through to the end, because the last one describes the current gap in predictive analytics and how it can be addressed.
1. IBM SPSS
You simply can’t talk about enterprise data software and not mention IBM. SPSS is a multifaceted software platform that can be used for anything from statistical and text analysis to big data deployment and predictive algorithms.
There are three IBM SPSS products available: Statistics, Modeler, and Watson Studio Premium. For predictive analytics, take a closer look at IBM SPSS Statistics, which combines ad hoc and geospatial analysis, as well as hypothesis testing. If you want a graphical representation of your outcomes, you can easily do so in the SPSS Modeler.
2. RapidMiner Studio
If you’re just want to try what predictive analytics has to offer, RapidMiner Studio can be a great choice as the top predictive analytics software with a free plan available.
Other benefits of RapidMiner Studio are its ease of use, with a drag-and-drop interface, and a library of nearly 1,500 preset algorithms for a variety of use cases. The downside of RapidMiner is that once you need more features, its paid plans start at over $7,000 per user a year.
3. Alteryx APA
When you try to match data science and automation, you get Alteryx. Its analytic process automation (APA) platform strives to make data science easy even for people who can’t write proper queries. Alteryx is user-friendly, delivers actionable data insights, and can handle unstructured data. Besides, it has the best collaboration features for those who need multiple user accounts.
4. Leadspace CDP
Yet another type of predictive analytics is available through Leadspace’s customer data platform (CDP). Focusing solely on the B2B market, Leadspace connects all the data points from any channel, creates unified customer profiles, and leverages its artificial intelligence algorithms to provide clear next-step recommendations and even integrate into other sales and marketing solutions.
5. TIBCO Spotfire
One of the easiest solutions to come out of any predictive analytics platform is TIBCO’s one-click predictions. The Spotfire tool automatically clusters and pre-programs most data, establishing appropriate connections and relationships between various data points. As a result, the platform features insightful data visualization which can show you the most important information at a glance.
Started mainly as a platform for developers and data scientists to create apps for data mining, Sisense has since dramatically improved the accessibility of its platform so that everyone can benefit from its modelling and predictive analytics. Business analytics features also extend into data visualization and easy KPI monitoring to help you come up with the right strategy at the right time.
7. Lift AI (and why it’s different to the rest)
There’s one big problem with predictive analytics tools.
Predictive analytics are not typically pure ‘machine-learning’ models (although some tools have a component of machine-learning). Most predictive analytics tools ask you to create a goal or outcome, feed it the right data, then use some elements of statistical modelling and machine-learning to help you. However, you have to train those models and require huge amounts of data to start becoming useful.
Machine-learning and the computing power available to execute it allows you to look at thousands of data points when you don't even know if they will be informative or causal to the outcome. Only machine-learning can assess such a huge set of data points and then compare every permutation against billions of already known outcomes to train the models.
But, it works best if it’s pre-trained and ready to go.
That’s what Lift AI uses, and it applies machine-learning to determine the ‘buyer intent’ of your website visitors based on a model built from millions of existing data points.
Lift AI can identify anonymous website visitors (who can make up to 98% of all visitors) instantly by way of their buyer intent - which is their likelihood to purchase or convert into a lead. Lift AI’s machine-learning model predicts this by scoring each individual visitor on the site.
With this information in hand, you have the power to make real-time decisions. Visitors could either be connected directly to one of your BDRs via any chat platform you have in place or met with a nurturing bot or a self-help bot to assist them depending on their purchase intent - low, medium, or high.
It’s common for Lift AI to identify around 9% of your web traffic as having high buyer intent.
The results from using Lift AI usually show up within the first 90 days, with some companies reporting up to 10x increase in conversion rates.
Leveraging predictive analytics will soon become the integral part of any decision-making process in business. By embracing some of the leading predictive analytics platforms today alongside machine-learning solutions like Lift AI, you can still get a clear first-mover advantage in any competitive landscape.