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Hitwise Intelligence - Tim Lovitt - AP

Analyst Weblog

New article, new blog - Australian Media Consumption

September 14, 2011

The article Australian Media Consumption is available over on the new Marketing Forward Asia Pacific blog.

Australian Media Consumption In the last few weeks we’ve spent a lot of time in the media space, specifically the online media space: who is watching what and reading where. Usual suspects figure highly – News sites, Entertainment sites and even YouTube...more

Posted by Tim Lovitt at 03:08 PM | (0) | (0)
In Categories Media

Mortgages up, Home Loans and Credit Cards steady

August 31, 2011

The recently released April-June Quarterly Banking Review (available for download) spotlights the habits of Australian consumers – not only are we saving more and paying down debt, but we're not thinking about new debt unless it’s a mortgage.


Searches for credit cards, home loans and mortgages all saw a drop across the quarter, with only Home Loans returning to levels of demand seen earlier in the year.

The variation here between ‘home loan’ and ‘mortgages’ is interesting too, stressing the difference that language
can make when it comes to sentiment – and how that sentiment translates to consumer demand.

In today's tight market, you might well see better returns marketing a mortgage today than you would a home loan. As seen in the charting however, this can change on a weekly basis.

Given this is all within just the Australian market, it’s easy to see the need to be well optimised for not only brand and product terms, but also generic terms, terms likely to be used by your potential customers as they search for you and your products.

For more Banking and Consumer insights, contact your Hitwise representative today.

Equally, if you’ve got a question you think we can answer, ask away and we’ll do our best to feature your queries where we can.

Experian Hitwise. Now you know.

Posted by Tim Lovitt at 01:07 PM | (0) | (0)
In Categories Finance

The Winner of The Block

August 19, 2011


Melbourne PR and Communications consultant Hamish Jones yesterday tweeted a question close to our hearts:Never watched an episode of #The Block. Are these odds likely to accurate reflect the results?

HJ Cropped.png

Not being home renovators was part of it, but in this case it was his query on the odds offered by Sportsbet.

Commercial odds are a form of predictive market, where the offerer is looking to offset risk as much as possible. Thus, as bets firm around a favourite, odds offered for that favourite decrease.

As you can see below, Josh and Jenna are Sportsbet's odds-on favourites.

Some back of the envelope figurings suggest they seem to be twice as likely to win as Rod & Tania, almost four times as likely as Polly& Waz and just under five times as likely to win as Katrina & Amie.

Betting odds - sportsbet.com.au.png

Given we haven’t watched The Block and aren’t privy to Sporsbet’s actuarial workings, we can't comment on their accuracy.

We do however have Search data, lots and lots of search data. Visualising this in the lead image (click for larger version) you start to see just how much interest there is in Josh and Jenna compared to everyone else. Don't read too much into Josh's slightly larger representation than Jenna's by the way - there's a lot of misspelling of Jenna.

Reviewing these variations analytically we see the following:

Going by public interest, Josh and Jenna are winners in the popularity stakes. However, they’re only just over twice as popular as Katrina and Amie. Rod & Tania / Polly & Waz also seem to have a better chance than the odds alone would suggest.

So, is the field tighter than it looks? Possibly, at least from the angle of public opinion.

In answering Hamish’s question, yes, the odds appear to braodly match the interest in the participants. We'll have to wait until Sunday to see if this translates into the highest sale price.

For more on predictive data, consumer insights and sentiment analysis, contact your Hitwise representative today.

Equally, if you’ve got a question you think we can answer, ask away and we’ll do our best to feature your queries where we can.

Experian Hitwise. Now you know.

NB Whilst Sportsbet are an Experian client, they have not been involved in the creation of this report. The odds used were publicly available at the time.

Addendum - 22/08/11There's a result that the data didn't cover - of the four properties, three failed to sell, with Polly and Waz subsequently winning by default. Congratulations!

Posted by Tim Lovitt at 06:14 AM | (0) | (0)
In Categories Media | Power of Search | Prediction | twitter

Predicting Masterchef

August 12, 2011

Predicting winners is big business, whether in business, at the track, or a punt between friends.

To quote the abstract of Prediction Markets in Theory and Practice by Justin Wolfers and Eric Zitzewitz, “market-generated forecasts typically outperform most moderately sophisticated benchmarks”.

In this case, the Australian public is the market, all those individuals curious enough to run searches in relation to the Masterchef.

My curiosity lead me to have a look at the data last Friday before the final – and I’m happy to say that between then and the Sunday night final, my prediction was heard by friends, family and everyone at the Saturday RMIT Masters of Designlecture: Kate to win.

How did I do it? Well, it’s more hypothesis than even theory at present, but it focuses on search habits over time.

Firstly, it’s important to establish that there has been consumer demand, as manifested by searches. There was, graphed below.

Variations of masterchef-02.png

Separate to the prediction, it’s interesting to note the difference in this over the last three years, especially in light of David Mott’s commentary on differing audience numbers over the years, as 2011 interest seems to be down by 50-odd percent compared to 2010.

In this instance, (12 rolling weeks, to week ending 6 August 2011), Kate had almost 50% more searches than Michael. Given the Law of large numbers (the Hitwise sample size 3,000,000±) this isn’t an issue of who is saying what, but around the overall volume of individual searches. In this instance, Kate was winner, just as she was on Sunday night.

Could you have made a guess as to the winner without this information? Yes. Could you make a more educated guess with a higher degree of certainty thanks to this research? We think so.

For more on predictive data, consumer insights and sentiment analysis, contact Hitwise today.

Experian Hitwise. Now you know.

Posted by Tim Lovitt at 05:09 PM | (0) | (0)
In Categories Masterchef | Power of Search | Prediction

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