Posts tagged ‘retail analytics’

Tales of Beers and Diapers

By Terence Craig

There is an apocryphal story that is often told to illustrate data mining concepts.  The story is about beer and diaper sales and usually goes along the lines of:

|INSERT MAJOR RETAILER NAME| found on |INSERT DAY OF THE WEEK| that beer and diaper sales were strongly correlated.  Once noticed on |INSERT BI TOOL OF CHOICE|, it was found |PICK ONE|:

  • That diapers are too heavy for recently pregnant women so they ask their husbands to pick them up coming home from work and since hubby is off the clock and ready to get his drink on, he also picks up beer.
  • That a diaper emergency occurs fairly late in the evening and the husband is sent out while the new mother cares for the baby.  Being annoyed, he also picks up a 12 pack to relax.
  • That |INSERT SOME EQUALLY GROSS STEREOTYPICAL ASSUMPTION ABOUT THE U.S. WORKING CLASS PARENT|.

The brilliant analyst at |SAME MAJOR RETAILER AS ABOVE| intuits that a simple relocation of beer next to diapers will lead to more purchases of beer and beer sales improve by |INSERT HIGHER %|.

(more…)

March 2, 2011 at 3:37 pm 7 comments

Speaking at Strata’s “Making Data Work” Conference

By Terence Craig

I am excited to announce that I will be speaking at Strata’s big data conference this year. As I mentioned in a previous post, Big Data and Big Analytics has really gained momentum over the last year.  Of course, having a major conference sponsored by the venerable O’Reilly organization is a great sign that the techniques, services, and technologies that make up the Big Data ecosystem are becoming mainstream.

My co-presenter is retail analytics guru extraordinaire Marilyn Craig, who currently runs the World Wide Analytics group for peripheral manufacturer Logitech.  Marilyn was the chief analytics officer at PatternBuilders for several years and made sure that we kept focused on the analytical needs of business users as opposed to techno-fetishism.  It is a philosophy we maintain to this day and our product is better for it. (more…)

January 5, 2011 at 5:57 pm Leave a comment


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