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Marian Hodges

As VP of Operations at Data Realty, Hodges and her sister company Aunalytics help clients use data to fuel the economics of their business. Collectively they comprise a team of data scientists, engineers, and business analysts working in tandem with the client to identify valuable insights that drive business growth.  

Before the data revolution, businesses mostly relied on generalized demographic information to make decisions. They weren’t able to access their own customer information because it was likely stuck in multiple databases, or they may not have had the talent or systems to pull the data together in any meaningful way. Enter data scientists, and companies like Aunalytics and Data Realty. “We look at their customer data stored in systems 'owned' by various departments (e.g. marketing, customer service, sales, billing, etc.), mining its history for buyer patterns and trends, to reveal insights into specific needs that would likely be personally significant to a prospective customer," Hodges said. "We can provide them with a better picture of the high value customer, and better insight into how to create relevant value propositions that improve the customer experience and inspire loyalty."  

With increased access and intelligence about data, the team is able to create analytics-ready data sets that allow companies to fine-tune their target audience and to respond dynamically as data sets are refreshed automatically. “Instead of sending the same message in a mailing to 10,000 people, you can now highlight an aspect of your product that will resonate more with a specific set of 100 people out of that group of 10,000, and highlight something else that will resonate with another 15 people, and so on,” Hodges said. “Companies are able to use the data to get to know more about and, ultimately, more powerfully target the unmet needs of these micro-segments.”

Clients have changed their offer strategies as a result of increased insight into existing customers.  “One client wanted to sell more bundled Internet services. They were leading with bundled services in their advertising, which highlights the phone service. They weren’t getting the response they hoped for, and wanted to figure out why customers weren’t buying.”

The team discovered that customers cared most about the high-speed Internet aspect of the plan, so the client began emphasizing that in their advertising and targeting people who use a lot of bandwidth, which led to increased sales.  Thanks to actionable data, the client was able to look like a superhero internally, providing information that led to better decisions for the company.

By putting data in greater context, “…we’re giving businesses more of an ‘owl’s view’ versus an ‘ant’s view,’ so they can be more efficient and make better decisions.”

Learn more about how to use data to generate improved insights and efficiency for customers - explore the Saint Mary's College Master of Science in Data Science program.

Hodges is also a member of the Consulting Team of Corporate Partners for the Saint Mary's College Master of Science in Data Science program.