Is social the most independent behavioural variable?



When you want to predict how your consumers will behave in near future, you look at behavioural clues. From database marketing perspective the key behavioural variable is recency (mostly transactional recency).  Transactional recency may not be the most independent variable but it does encapsulate a lot of things and gives you a powerful variable to work with. In fact, for offline channels, recency is by and large the only predictive variable available. In online channels, especially your website, many behavioural clues get lost with call-to-actions (natural structure) of your website. Though the functionalism approach from Semphonic solves this problem to some extent, there’s only so much you can do; after all, your website cannot be completely fluid. Social, on the other hand is totally fluid. So, behavioural clues obtained from social media can be immensely powerful. Perhaps they represent the most unadulterated behavioural patterns of your consumers that you can ever lay your hands on. The problem, as you’d have guessed, lies in linking these social clues back to individual transactions; and we are not there yet!! But if we continue to work with social data at an aggregate level, we are certainly leaving at lot on table!!

In any case, I think, marketers searching for independent predictive behavioral variables will find reasonably good answers in social.

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