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3 Types of Listings You Can Win Using Predictive Analytics
Big data and predictive analytics are the talk of the real estate technology world, but many agents and brokers still aren't sure how predictive analytics work. In short, predictive analytics analyzes massive sets of "big data" and illuminates patterns and behavior that may not be visible to the naked eye. The most infamous example of predictive analytics came a few years ago when Target successfully predicted (and marketed) to a pregnant teenager. Just as expectant mothers may buy unscented lotion or calcium supplements, homeowners exhibit "selling signals" as they get ready to list. These signals fluctuate from market to market, and even block to block. Without the help of an algorithm designed to identify them, they may go unnoticed.
​Predictive analytics isn't the future. It's changing our world and our industry TODAY.
It's a story that's taken on legendary status in the field of predictive analytics and predictive marketing: Target, after analyzing the buying habits of a teenage girl in Minnesota, sent her mother-to-be product offers in the mail. Her dad called to complain about the coupons targeting a young woman who he said was too young to have a child. Then a week later, he called back... to apologize and admit that his daughter was, in fact, expecting a baby. At the time, the news made national headlines. Reactions ranged from, "How cool is big data?!" to "Big brother is watching!" — and everything in between. And most people agreed that while it was an interesting story, there was no way that algorithms could truly predict smaller, reactionary human behaviors. In hindsight, that story can likely be boiled down to Target sending a mass coupon campaign to anyone who purchased a pregnancy test with a debit card in a certain time frame. So while it's the narrative referenced most often when people discuss predictive analytics, it actually sells predictive analytics short. That's because predictive analytics isn't about drawing a straight line from one behavior (like buying a pregnancy test) to the next (like needing expectant mother products and coupons). True predictive algorithms take thousands of data points and uncover hidden trends and potential behaviors that are invisible to the naked eye. And these "real" predictions? They have the power to change how we live and how we make decisions — though most of us don't pay attention to their daily influence.
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