InsightIQ Blog

Stay informed by reading current blog entries from our Quaero experts. Learn more about industry trends, gain insight into recent client successes, get up to date on company happenings and get to know us — and our opinions — even better.

Showing Blogs: 125 of 464

  • Improving Query Performance Using Partitioning and Bucketing in Hive

    Posted on: 4/14/14

    In this post, we will talk about how we can use the partitioning features available in Hive to improve performance of Hive queries.


    Hive is a good tool for performing queries on large datasets, especially datasets that require full table scans. But quite often there are instances where users need to filter the data on specific column values. Generally, Hive users know about the domain of the data that they deal with. With this knowledge they can identify common columns that are frequently queried in order to identify columns with low cardinality which can be used to organize data using the partitioning feature of Hive. In non-partitioned tables, Hive would have to read all the files in a table’s data directory and subsequently apply filters on it. This is slow and expensive—especially in cases of large tables.

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  • The Basics of a Great CRM Database

    Posted on: 4/7/14

    Customer Relationship Management, as the name implies, is all about managing customer data and information. The information that databases contain today has moved far and beyond the basics of name, address, and age. Naturally, any CRM database starts with great data and there are a few tips to keep in mind as you collect that data:

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  • In 500 Words or Less Describe Your Data Scientist Spring Break

    Posted on: 3/28/14

    Data Scientists are not traditionally known as the partying crowd, but they are a passionate bunch. They may not head to Daytona Beach for Spring Break, but they still may be up until 3 AM that week. What makes passionate Data Scientists stand out like their partying brethren?

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  • What I learned from Robert Redford Today

    Posted on: 3/27/14

    One of the most tweeted quotes of Day Two of the Adobe Digital Summit came from Robert Redford (yes, THE Robert Redford), who participated in the morning’s general session as part of a Q&A with Adobe SVP & CMO Ann Lewnes.

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  • Adobe Summit: Day 2 Recap

    Posted on: 3/27/14

    The second day of the Adobe Summit today was quite a bit different from the first day. Less pitching of Adobe products and more about process and people. Two really outstanding interviews in the morning. 

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  • Adobe Summit: Day 1 Recap

    Posted on: 3/26/14

    The first day of the Adobe Summit today was interesting. There was a great deal of talk about disruption and discontinuity in marketing, about marketers having to start over with a clean slate rather than just trying to connect existing silos within marketing, which have certainly proliferated within the past few years with the explosion of social and devices. There was also a great deal of talk about the interconnections between marketing and the overall customer experience. Finally, there were claims about how it is becoming easier for marketers to manage their processes end to end.

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  • Predictive Analytics & Speed Dating: Unlikely Bedfellows for Avoiding Sales Fatigue

    Posted on: 3/21/14

    Sales occur when consumer demand meets supply. In today’s competitive marketplace every organization is looking for the opportunity to spur further demand and many are quickly realizing that there isn’t a short-term or quick fix. It’s not enough to have the right product; marketers need to craft the right message, at the right time, and deliver it the right way to a targeted audience. By applying predictive analytics to influence consumer response to a sales offer, organizations can better understand a consumer’s preference for how the message is crafted, inclination towards a specific value proposition, and threshold for frequency of communications.

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  • Earning Green on Saint Patrick's Day

    Posted on: 3/14/14

    Saint Patrick's Day is a cultural and religious holiday celebrated annually on March 17.  While the day traditionally serves importance for the global Irish community, recent times has shown its popularity increase outside of this heritage.  With the important cultural significance aside, today’s celebration of Saint Patrick’s Day represents an important opportunity for businesses to capture wallet share.

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  • Return to Sender: The Embarrassment of Sending to the Wrong Recipient

    Posted on: 3/4/14

    We’ve all been there. In the rush to send out one of the hundreds of emails you’ll send out today, you rely too much on Microsoft Outlook’s email address auto-complete. You write your email, if you’re lucky, you proofread it, and then it’s all systems go. You feel good about yourself for getting one thing done right today, you move on to the next task, and then the unthinkable happens. You find out that the email was sent to the wrong recipient. How could this happen? You double checked the email addresses, quickly albeit, but now the message is out in the ether. The recall option doesn’t work. The damage is done, time to move on.

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  • Email Marketing: Increasing Customer Reach

    Posted on: 2/27/14

    Today, customers have access to a lot of options, offers, and information. When you receive 5 different emails for a similar product or service, it’s easy to tune out the less appealing ones. So how do you make sure your email is the attention-grabbing one? It needs to be personalized and most importantly engaging.

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  • Predictive Modeling: Back to the Basics

    Posted on: 2/18/14

    Last week my friend and colleague, Cory Hefner, wrote a very noteworthy article touching on a type of predictive modeling method called Ensemble Models. He concluded that when you combine the results of more than one predictive modeling method, it is better than any single method alone—just like two heads are better than one. As these methods gain more and more popularity within the analytics community I thought I would touch on a very key point that should be taken into consideration before a single model is even built. Aside from using more accurate methods which may obtain better results the age old process of variable creation should not be ignored.

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  • Quaero Analytics: Supercharging Predictions Part II

    Posted on: 2/7/14

    What’s interesting about ensemble modeling is that it’s various models all combined together. Once each model is built, they all pull out different intricacies from the data. Some are better at non-linear trends while others perform well with linear-type trends. Let’s use football as an example. If you look at pro football web pages, that’s highly indicative of you signing up for fantasy football. Age, on the other hand, is not the best linear indicator. Those on the far ends of the curve, either very young or very old, are much less likely to sign up than age groups in between.

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  • Quaero Analytics: Supercharging Predictions

    Posted on: 2/5/14

    Ensemble modeling is not new. Random forest modeling has long been a favorite methodology of Quaero consultants as the prediction method of choice. But as with anything, there is always room for improvement and ensemble modeling offers advantages over any single one model. Ensemble modeling is basically combining multiple modeling methodologies together. In fact, random forest models by definition are an ensemble of decision trees.

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  • Revisiting the Basics: 8 Cardinal Principles of Direct Marketing Success

    Posted on: 1/31/14

    It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day demands when it comes to marketing. We often forget how basic the objectives we learned a long time ago are. So it’s time to review the simple principles presented at the DMA Conference we should always have in mind. 

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  • Versatility of the Data Steward

    Posted on: 1/21/14

    Recently, I had the opportunity to speak with clients about their data governance and stewardship initiatives. It seems like the role of the Data Steward is often too narrowly defined as someone who is focused solely on data quality. In addition, I have heard the following misperceptions related to this role within an organization:

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  • Email Deliverability Tips: Do You Deliver?

    Posted on: 1/14/14

    Oh the joys of having a piping hot pizza arrive at your door while you lounge in your PJs and watch your favorite sports team rout your most despised enemy. In-home/office delivery is a service that is expected today for everything from food and retail purchases to bigger ticket items like cars. Delivery is not only a business imperative for your neighborhood pizza parlor, it should also be a critical part of your business plan.

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  • Data Scientist: Evolution of the Business Analyst

    Posted on: 12/27/13

    The business/data analyst role is evolving into a new role due in part to the new technology of big data. The data scientist role has emerged because of the increase in breadth and depth of data being examined. In addition to computer science and analytical skills, a data scientist has a strong business sense and the ability to communicate findings to both business and IT teams. They review data from multiple sources, looking at it from various angles, searching to discover insight into the data which will provide a competitive advantage or help resolve a business issue.

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  • Walking the Line: BSA Best Practices

    Posted on: 12/6/13

    The Business Systems Analyst (BSA) role can be a tricky one. The goal is to become the bridge to key parties. It is the role of the BSA to bridge the gap between the client’s ever-changing business needs and the feasibility of making those enhancements with the technical team. It is also the responsibility of the BSA to bridge gaps between account managers and the database/software engineers. BSAs can both sympathize with the needs and frustrations of an angry client as well as with the outcries of “minor” changes on the database turning into a three-month process. Below are the key lessons learned over the years to help any BSA overcome a burning bridge:

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  • 3 Ways to Become a Better Content Writer

    Posted on: 11/20/13

    Becoming a strong writer takes practice, but writing work-related content is a great way to improve. You’re already an expert in what you’re talking about. If you a follow a few tips to improve your writing and combine them with your expertise, there is no doubt that you can create some excellent content.

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  • 5 Strategies for Effective Communication

    Posted on: 10/11/13

    As a technical writer, I depend heavily on other people when it comes to certain projects. Even if you’re not a writer, chances are there are times where you have to work with others and rely on their expertise. This can be especially challenging when it comes to developing written content like articles, case studies, or white papers. A lot of people do not like to write. The process can become even more overwhelming when multiple people are involved in the writing as well as the review that follows.

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  • Marketing Automation: Why It Doesn't Replace the Need to Think

    Posted on: 10/4/13

    Marketing automation is an incredible tool for connecting with and engaging
    your customers. The old adage, "half of my marketing is working but I don't know which half," no longer really applies. Truly, marketing can be held accountable for both success and failure, and can more effectively learn from each mistake. Also, we are able to attribute sales to specific activities, which over time helps to create a more impactful marketing plan to maximize resources and hopefully grow budget each year. 

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  • The Cost of Bad Customer Service

    Posted on: 9/18/13

    Bad customer service is possibly one of my biggest pet peeves next to people not washing their hands after using the bathroom – but that’s another topic. I think we can all relate to receiving horrible customer service at some time or another whether in a restaurant, telecommunication, retail store, online retailer, hospital, and so on.

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  • How to Generate Topics for Your Corporate Blog

    Posted on: 9/11/13

    As a content marketer, I spend a lot of time writing, thinking about writing, and trying to get other people to write. I don't have to tell you that sometimes, it's just plain difficult. The most common question I receive from the experts I work with is "what should I write about?" Deciding on a topic should be easy for someone with years of experience, right? But unfortunately that's typically not the case. Often times, the challenge appears so overwhelming that we give up altogether. Yeah, I see you out there, you know who you are.

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  • 3 Takeaways from HubSpot Inbound 2013

    Posted on: 8/30/13

    Last week I had the privilege of attending the HubSpot Inbound Conference in my hometown of Boston, MA. The conference was extremely well-run, and the line-up of presenters and keynote speakers was really quite inspiring. I also was able to connect with several interesting and motivated marketers to share best practices and ideas for developing engaging, long-lasting content that will attract prospects. While I learned so very much, in this post I want to share with you the top three takeaways that I took from the experience. For those who were there, I'm interested to see if you agree/disagree:

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  • Solution for Staggering Deliveries in Neolane

    Posted on: 8/28/13

    As a Neolane client, are you having problems getting your emails delivered? As someone who works with clients on this very issue, I see the challenges associated with email delivery. We work closely with Neolane’s deliverability contact who recommends that companies send emails based on customer engagement—an important metric nowadays.

    In the email world, the “Engaged” segments are the individuals who consistently click or open your emails. Therefore as a standard practice, we’ve created engagement splits. A split-type activity lets you partition a target into several subsets. These are mutually exclusive:

    1.      New to file – New to the database and never clicked

    2.      Three months – Clicked in the last 3 months

    3.      Six months – Clicked in the last 6 months

    4.      Twelve months – Clicked in the last 12 months

    5.      All else – The complement of the split

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