Monthly Archives: October 2012

The business of prediction

Human beings are obsessed to know the future. What’s going to happen is something that excites people and in some cases helps them make decisions. The business of prediction, what the future holds, is a multi-billion dollar industry. It ranges from predicting the stock price of a company to success of a product launch to opening of a movie to outcome of a match-up.

Big data gives us immense power to more accurately provide indications for the future. The large number of conversations happening online act like an unparalleled source of information. The heart of dealing with big data lies in the analysis of this data. A combination of technological processing and expert observation leads to generating patterns with rich insights and takeaways  that in-turn lead to indications for the future.

MavenMagnet’s primary focus is to identify the reasons behind every takeaway or prediction. The key drivers and barriers defining the success or failure of an entity. The top influencers who are making or breaking a reputation and will play a role in the future. The best steps you can take to prevent a negative tide or ride a positive wave.

Everything apart, if a prediction is not supported with a reason, it’s worthless. If there’s nothing that can help you improve the fortune of your entity or impact what’s going to happen, it makes very little sense. Of course there’s keeping your fingers crossed for a positive surprise…another thing we humans are obsessed with!

Feed the cash cow

Windows, Coke Classic and iPhone are cash cows for Microsoft, Coca-cola and Apple respectively. What cash cows provide is the ability for these companies to fuel innovation and launch new products. Consider Microsoft as an example. The company keeps fueling innovation in new products like XBox and Bing while at the same time putting in a lot of effort in feeding the cash cows they own as their flagship products–Windows and Office.

It is very important to keep feeding the cash cow. Every company out there wants to have an iPhone or Windows in their product portfolio, so the key here is to maintain the market dominance for these products. You cannot afford to take your foot off the accelerator when it comes to developing and marketing these products. Product development, innovation, advertising and support for cash cows should always be maintained.

Feeding the cash cow doesn’t mean missing the innovation cycle or sticking to something that can be replaced by a better and more useful product by your competition. Cash cow for your company may evolve or completely change over time. You may start with something as the biggest revenue generator for your company and change it to something completely different. Take Apple for example. Apple evolved its cash cow from iPod to iPhone pretty seamlessly. On the other hand, consider Kodak. The company completely missed the digital camera innovation cycle fearing the cannibalization of its cash cow (35mm camera) and eventually losing the leadership position in the camera market.