Marketing is one of those fields where everything is closely monitored and where data-driven approaches are the norm. And because of this marketers are using statistical methods to gather, analyze and predict trends and their campaign efforts as well as collect information about their focus groups and apply it to the real world scenarios.
Statistics can help marketers to overcome some gaps in their understanding about demographic groups and people in specific areas where they want to promote a product or service. If you have ever seen a targeted advertisement then you know that these marketers are becoming more and more precise in pinpointing their products to people that would actually buy them. With the help of our modern tools and the internet these people are collecting more and more data on everyone and then using this data to predict what where and how you will buy their products. But that doesn’t stop there and lately using statistical data analysis marketers are starting to promote products that are related to what you do but wouldn’t even have thought of buying.
To see how far statistical data analysis has come you need to look at the Target supermarket chain and their efforts in increasing profits and analyzing their customers. The story goes that Target with their loyalty cards and online purchases are collecting huge amounts of data on every customers and their buying habits as well as where they live and even what they could buy. Then smart data analysts use statistical analysis and try to find every customer buying patterns so they can then intervene and get even more out of everyone. This customer targeting even includes coupon sending to their regular customer homes with item that they could like and might buy. I once read a story that Target sent coupons with baby-clothes and other pregnancy items to a 16 year old girl and the father furiously demanded that they stop doing that and that his daughter is just 16 and can’t be pregnant. But after a couple of months the father came back and apologized because his daughter was in fact pregnant and that customer targeting system knew it faster than that girls father. Of course this is an extreme case but imagine how much money a store like this could make it that system could know everything about every customer and their buying patterns. And it is not science fiction because if you can tell that a buyer is pregnant only from the items bought in the store then soon enough that statistical analysis will reveal much more intricate details about you and your buying habits.