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Which area of your brand’s performance should you concentrate on improving? Should you be focusing on customer service or price? Should you position as cool or competent? These are the questions answered by driver analysis.
Driver analysis, which is also known as key driver analysis, importance analysis, and relative importance analysis, uses the data from questions like these to work out the relative importance of each of the predictor variables in predicting the outcome variable. Each of the predictors is commonly referred to as a driver. The goal is to quantify the importance of each of the drivers. That is, the goal is to compute importance scores, so that we can work out which drivers are key. Importance scores are sometimes referred to as importance weights.
The key output from driver analysis is typically a table or chart showing the relative importance of the different drivers (predictors). Whereas the focus in much of data science is on prediction, with driver analysis the focus is instead on identifying the relative importance of the predictors (drivers).
Basic process for Driver Analysis
1. Code the outcome variable from worst to best
2. Code the predictor variables from worst to
3. (Optional) Stacking or auto-stacking data
4. Select an appropriate GLM
5. Review the signs of the GLM’s coefficients
6. Use Shapley regression or Johnson’s relative weights
7.Select an appropriate technique for missing values
8. Check sensitivity to outliers
9. (Linear GLMs only) Use a robust variance estimate or weight
10. Data visualization