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What is Prescriptive Analytics?

Prescriptive analytics is the fourth and final branch of analytics we’re going to focus on in our analytics series. The field of prescriptive analytics is a little more recent than other analytics in the predictive grouping. Prescriptive analytics can be thought of as “do this to achieve that.” It is about what actions you should be taking to achieve a desired goal.

What is Prescriptive Analytics?

Prescriptive analytics is all about application. This is typically where data science and math comes into play. Prescriptive goes past predictive analytics by prescribing the actions that you and your team should make to achieve your predictive outcomes.

Predictive analytics helps you find where your sales team can improve. Prescriptive analytics boils down to prescribing different actions that can be taken and how each of those actions will help in those improvements. Prescriptive analytics partially predicts possible outcomes in addition to why that outcome will happen. Prescriptive analytics helps you take advantage of the results from predictive analytics.

How Does Prescriptive Analytics Work?

Let’s break prescriptive down some. When you utilize prescriptive analytics you are predicting multiple futures. By doing this you are able to evaluate the different possible outcomes.

Prescriptive analytics works by using machine learning, algorithms, and computational modeling. These techniques are used on historical data, big data, transactional data, and data feeds. While prescriptive analytics can be very difficult to implement, when done so correctly, you can greatly impact and influence your team’s decisions and your business.

When should you use prescriptive analytics? Prescriptive can be used pretty much whenever you need to advise team members on which action they are best suited to take.

Prescriptive Analytics and Sales

Prescriptive determines what consequences can occur and then provides you with alternatives to change the outcome by taking different actions. This is relevant to sales reps because they are shown how they should proceed with an account or lead with real-time data. Some of the relevant data that prescriptive analytics provides includes prospect engagement and strengths or weaknesses in their selling process.

Prescriptive analytics is important in a sales setting because it helps sales managers and teams understand the data they are working with and define a clear path on how to proceed.
Want more analytics insight? Check out our other blogs in our analytics series:
What is Predictive Analytics?
What is Diagnostic Analytics?
What is Descriptive Analytics?

February 1, 2017
Caitlin Glasscock
Data Sales

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