Key Driver Analysis: Top-down & Bottom-up Approach
At OdinText we’ve found that the best way to identify all key drivers in any analysis really, especially in customer experience management (including but not limited to KPI’s such as OSAT, Net Promoter Score, Likelihood to Return or other real behavior) is through a dual process combining a theory-driven (aka “top-down”) and a data-exploratory or data-driven approach (aka “bottom-up”):
This approach requires you to identify important concepts or themes before even starting to explore and analyze your data. In customer satisfaction or brand equity research you can often start by identifying these key concepts by reviewing the strengths and weaknesses associated with your brand or product, or by listing the advantages and challenges that you believe may be prevalent (e.g., good customer service, poor management, professionalism etc.). This is an a priori approach where the user/analyst identifies a few things that they believe may be important.
This approach requires you to use a more advanced text analytics software, like OdinText, to mark and extract concepts or themes that are most frequently mentioned in customers’ text comments found in your dataset and that are relevant to your brand or product evaluation (e.g., high cost, unresponsiveness, love). Better analytics software should be able to automatically identify important things that the user/analyst didn’t know to look for.
Top-down vs. Bottom-up
The top-down approach does not reflect the content of your data, whereas the bottom-up approach while being purely based on the data can fail to include important concepts or themes that occur in your data less frequently or is abstracted in some way. For instance, in a recent customer satisfaction analysis, very few customer comments explicitly mentioned problems associated with management of the local branches (therefore, “management” was not mentioned frequently enough to be identified as a key driver by the software using the bottom-up approach).
However as the analyst had hypothesized that management might be an important issue, more subtle mentions associated with the concept of management were included in the analysis. Subsequently predictive analytics revealed that “poor management” was in fact a major driver of customer dissatisfaction. This key driver was only “discovered” due to the fact that the analyst had also used a top-down approach in their text analysis.
It may be that some of the concepts or themes identified using the two approaches overlap but this will only ensure that the most important concepts are included.
Remember, that only when combining these two very different approaches can you confidently identify a complete range of key drivers of satisfaction or other important metrics.
I hope you found today’s Text Analytics Tip useful.
Please check back in the next few days as we plan to post a new interesting analysis similar to, but even more exciting than last week’s Brand Analysis.
[NOTE: Gosia is a Data Scientist at OdinText Inc. Experienced in text mining and predictive analytics, she is a Ph.D. with extensive research experience in mass media’s influence on cognition, emotions, and behavior. Please feel free to request additional information or an OdinText demo here.]