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Anatomy of a Data Story BY Anand Madhav

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This presentation was created by Anand Madhav, Gramener's Sr. Manager - Data Sciences, for a guest lecture session at IIFT Delhi. It talks about data storytelling, how to create a data story, and what ingredients make a data story exciting.

Anand Madhav also teaches data storytelling to analysts and data scientists. Check out more about Gramener's data storytelling workshop at https://gramener.com/data-storytelling-workshop

Publicada em: Dados e análise
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Anatomy of a Data Story BY Anand Madhav

  1. 1. Anatomy of a Data Story Anand Madhav
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  4. 4. 4 Soho, London - Today Soho, London – 1853/54
  5. 5. Cholera deaths in London - 1854 5 Water Pump at Broad Street, London
  6. 6. We’ve been telling stories with data for a long time 6 How a nurse changed the course of a war using data storytelling. Created by Florence Nightingale for Queen Victoria during England’s war with France. Visualizes deaths due to: Red: War wounds Black: Other war-related causes Blue: Avoidable hospital diseases
  7. 7. Stories have a huge impact on humans 7 Storytelling has a 30X Return on Investment Rob Walker and Joshua Glenn auctioned common items like mugs, golf balls, toys, etc. The item descriptions were stories purpose-written by 200+ contributing writers. Items that were bought for $250 sold for over $8,000 – a return of over 3,000% for storytelling! Stories are memorable and viral People remember stories. They’ll act on them. People share stories. That enables collective action. We analyze data to improve people’s decision making. For this to be effective, data stories are needed more than ever before. http://significantobjects.com/
  8. 8. Data storytelling is a critical skill for data scientists, analysts & managers 8 Share your data & analysis as data stories Whenever you share inferences from data – whether it’s as a presentation, or an email or document with your analysis, or as a dashboard – craft it as a story. Today we will look at a few engaging data stories and find out how to convert an analysis into a memorable story – even if you’ve never told a story before. But analysts present their work, not their message Data scientists present their analysis – what they did, and what they found. That’s not what the audience needs. Audiences need a message that tells them what to do, and why. Told in an engaging way. As a story.
  9. 9. New digital tools allow us to do this at scale
  10. 10. New digital tools allow us to do this at scale Sachin R Tendulkar Sourav C Ganguly Rahul Dravid Mohammad Azharuddin Yuvraj Singh Virender Sehwag Mahendra S Dhoni Alaysinhji D Jadeja Navjot S Sidhu Gautam Gambhir Krishnamachari Srikkanth Kapil Dev Dillip B Vengsarkar Suresh K Raina Ravishankar J Shastri Sunil M Gavaskar Mohammad Kaif Virat Kohli Vinod G Kambli Vangipurappu V S Laxman Rabindra R Singh Sanjay V Manjrekar Mohinder Amarnath Manoj M Prabhakar Rohit G Sharma Irfan K Pathan Nayan R Mongia Ajit B Agarkar Dinesh Mongia Harbhajan Singh Krishna K D Karthik Sandeep M Patil Anil Kumble Yashpal Sharma Javagal Srinath Hemang K Badani Yusuf K Pathan Robin V Uthappa Raman Lamba Zaheer Khan Ravindra A Jadeja Pathiv A Patel Sadagopan Ramesh Roger M H Binny Woorkeri V Raman Sunil B Joshi Kiran S More Praveen K Amre Ashok Malhotra Chetan Sharma Kapil Dev’s 175 against Zimbabwe in 1983 Gavaskar’s 107 against New Zealand in 1987 Srikkanth’s 95 against Sri Lanka in 1982 Siddhu’s 134 against England in Gwalior, 1993 Sachin’s 200 against South Africa in 2010 Dhoni’s 198 against Sri Lamka in 2005 Sachin’s 134 against Australia in 1998 Ganguly’s 183 against Sri Lanka in 1999 Sehwag’s 146 against Sri Lanka in 2009 Yusuf Pathan’s 123 against New Zealand in 2010 Kohli’s 107 against Engalnd in 2011
  11. 11. Segmenting India Geo-demographically Previously, the client was treating contiguous regions as a homogenous entity, from a channel content perspective. To deliver targeted content, we divided India into 6 clusters based on their demographic behavior. Specifically, three composite indices were created based on the economic development lifecycle: • Education (literacy, higher education) that leads to... • Skilled jobs (in mfg. or services) that leads to... • Purchasing power (higher income, asset ownership) Districts were divided (at the average cut-off) by: Offering targeted content to these clusters will reach a more homogenous demographic population. Skilled Poorer Richer Unskilled Skilled Uneducated Educated Uneducated Educated Unskilled Purchasing power Skilled jobs Education Poor Breakout Aspirant Owner Business Rich Poor Rural, uneducated agri workers. Young population with low income and asset ownership. Mostly in Bihar, Jharkhand, UP, MP. Breakout Rural, educated agri workers poised for skilled labor. Higher asset ownership. Parts of UP, Bihar, MP. Aspirant Regions with skilled labor pools but low purchasing power. Cusp of economic development. Mostly WB, Odisha, parts of UP Owner Regions with unskilled labor but high economic prosperity (landlords, etc..) Mostly AP, TN, parts of Karnataka, Gujarat Business Lower education but working in skilled jobs, and prosperous. Typical of business communities. Parts of Gujarat, TN, Urban UP, Punjab, etc. Rich Urban educated population working in skilled jobs. All metros, large cities, parts of Kerala, TN The 6 clusters are
  12. 12. This is a dataset (1975 – 1990) that has been around for several years and has been studied extensively. Yet, a visualization can reveal patterns that are neither obvious nor well known. For example, • Are birthdays uniformly distributed? • Do doctors or parents exercise the C-section option to move dates? • Is there any day of the month that has unusually high or low births? • Are there any months with relatively high or low births? Very high births in September. But this is fairly well known. Most conceptions happen during the winter holiday season Relatively few births during the Christmas and Thanksgiving holidays, as well as New Year and Independence Day. Most people prefer not to have children on the 13th of any month, given that it’s an unlucky day Some special days like April Fool’s day are avoided, but Valentine’s Day is quite popular More births Fewer births … on average, for each day of the year (from 1975 to 1990) Let’s look at 15 years of US Birth Data Education LINK Fraud
  13. 13. The pattern in India is quite different This is a birth date dataset that’s obtained from school admission data for over 10 million children. When we compare this with births in the US, we see none of the same patterns. For example, • Is there an aversion to the 13th or is there a local cultural nuance? • Are holidays avoided for births? • Which months have a higher propensity for births, and why? • Are there any patterns not found in the US data? Very few children are born in the month of August, and thereafter. Most births are concentrated in the first half of the year We see a large number of children born on the 5th, 10th, 15th, 20th and 25th of each month – that is, round numbered dates Such round numbered patterns a typical indication of fraud. Here, birthdates are brought forward to aid early school admission More births Fewer births … on average, for each day of the year (from 2007 to 2013) Education LINK Fraud
  14. 14. This adversely impacts children’s marks It’s a well-established fact that older children tend to do better at school in most activities. Since many children have had their birth dates brought forward, these younger children suffer. The average marks of children “born” on the 1st, 5th, 10th, 15th etc.. of the month tend to score lower marks. • Are holidays avoided for births? • Which months have a higher propensity for births, and why? • Are there any patterns not found in the US data? Higher marks Lower marks … on average, for children born on a given day of the year (from 2007 to 2013) Children “born” on round numbered days score lower marks on average, due to a higher proportion of younger children Education LINK Fraud
  15. 15. An energy utility detected billing fraud This plot shows the frequency of all meter readings from Apr- 2010 to Mar-2011. An unusually large number of readings are aligned with the slab boundaries. Below is a simple histogram (or frequency distribution) of usage levels. Each bar represents the number of customers with a customers with a specific bill amount (in units, or KWh). Tariffs are based on the usage slab. Someone with 101 units is billed in full at a higher tariff than someone with 100 units. So people have a strong incentive to stay at or within a slab boundary. An energy utility (with over 50 million subscribers) had 10 years worth of customer billing data available. Most fraud detection software failed to load the data, and sampled data revealed little or no insight. This can happen in one of two ways. First, people may be monitoring their usage very carefully, and turn of their lights and fans the instant their usage hits the slab boundary. Or, more realistically, there’s probably some level of corruption involved, where customers pay a small sum to the meter reading staff to ensure that it stays exactly at the slab boundary, giving them the advantage of a lower price.
  16. 16. This plot shows the frequency of all meter readings from Apr- 2010 to Mar-2011. An unusually large number of readings are aligned with the tariff slab boundaries. This clearly shows collusion of some form with the customers. Apr-10 May-10 Jun-10 Jul-10 Aug-10 Sep-10 Oct-10 Nov-10 Dec-10 Jan-11 Feb-11 Mar-11 217 219 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 350 200 200 250 200 200 200 201 200 200 200 250 200 200 150 250 150 150 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 150 150 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 50 200 200 200 150 180 150 50 100 50 70 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 110 100 100 150 123 123 50 100 50 100 100 100 100 100 0 111 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 50 50 0 100 27 100 50 100 100 100 100 100 70 100 1 1 1 100 99 50 100 100 100 100 100 100 This happens with specific customers, not randomly. Here are such customers’ meter readings. Section Apr-10 May-10 Jun-10 Jul-10 Aug-10 Sep-10 Oct-10 Nov-10 Dec-10 Jan-11 Feb-11 Mar-11 Section 1 70% 97% 136% 65% 110% 116% 121% 107% 114% 88% 74% 109% Section 2 66% 92% 66% 87% 70% 64% 63% 50% 58% 38% 41% 54% Section 3 90% 46% 47% 43% 28% 31% 50% 32% 19% 38% 8% 34% Section 4 44% 24% 36% 39% 21% 18% 24% 49% 56% 44% 31% 14% Section 5 4% 63% -27% 20% 41% 82% 26% 34% 43% 2% 37% 15% Section 6 18% 23% 30% 21% 28% 33% 39% 41% 39% 18% 0% 33% Section 7 36% 51% 33% 33% 27% 35% 10% 39% 12% 5% 15% 14% Section 8 22% 21% 28% 12% 24% 27% 10% 31% 13% 11% 22% 17% Section 9 19% 35% 14% 9% 16% 32% 37% 12% 9% 5% -3% 11% If we define the “extent of fraud” as the percentage excess of the 100 unit meter reading, the value varies considerably across sections, and time New section manager arrives … and is transferred out … with some explainable anomalies. Why would these happen?
  17. 17. With the growth of self-service BI, 85% of companies have lost track of how many dashboards they generated What QUESTION does the dashboard answer? Is the ANSWER evident from the dashboard? What ACTION should the user take now? BUT 3 THINGS ARE UNCLEAR ON MOST DASHBOARDS 17
  18. 18. You have data. You have analysis. Now what? Understanding the audience & intent Finding insights Storylining Designing data stories
  19. 19. Understanding audience & intent Step 1 Understanding the audience & intent Finding insights Storylining Designing data stories
  20. 20. DO IT: Start with your own hypothesis • Define different user personas • What problems do you think your persona is facing? • How do you feel the persona will use the analysis? • Frame it as a user scenario. CHECK IT: Verify user scenario with a partner  Is it framed as “As a [persona], I’m in [situation] where I face [problem], leading to [consequence]. Solving it by [action] leads to [impact]”  Would the persona relate to this user scenario if they heard it? List scenario(s) for each persona For each persona, answer the following questions: 1. What situation are they currently in? 2. What problems do they face? 3. What is the consequence? 4. What action can they need to take using your analysis? 5. What is the impact of this action? Combine these as a user scenario: “As a [persona], I’m in [situation] where I face [problem], leading to [consequence]. Solving it by [action] leads to [impact]” • John: As a Marketing manager, I have to create region-wise budget for the next quarter. I don’t know which regions give the highest RoI, so my spend isn’t optimized. Solving it by prioritizing the region will lead to maximum ROI. Clear needs & future scenario leads to effective communication. Know your audience’s needs, they determine the story, align the message accordingly Reference: SPIN Selling by Neil Rackham
  21. 21. Finding Insights Step 2 Understanding the audience & intent Finding insights Storylining Designing data stories
  22. 22. Insights must be Big, Useful, and Surprising Filter the analyses using these as a checklist IS THE INSIGHT BIG IS THE INSIGHT USEFUL IS THE INSIGHT SURPRISING The analysis must, of course, be statistically significant. But it should also be numerically significant. We want a result that substantially changes the outcome. What should the audience do after hearing the insight? Can they take an action that improves their objective? Even if it’s informational, what should they do next? Is this something they didn’t know? Is it non-obvious? Does it overturn a domain-driven belief or a gut feel? Or does it bring consensus to a group with divided opinion?
  23. 23. Marking each analysis as Big, Useful or Surprising (High, Medium, Low) 23Only those that are high or medium on all aspects are insights Insights Big Useful Surprising Twice as many Detractors talk about our Product’s ease of use. Low Medium High Typing with capitalization in a credit application indicates creditworthiness Low Low High Almost 20% of all voice search queries are triggered by just 25 words Low High Medium More engaged employees have fewer accidents Low High Low About 50% of American small businesses do not have a website High Medium Low The recommendation system influences about 80% of content streamed on Netflix High Medium Low
  24. 24. Storylining Step 3 Understanding the audience & intent Finding insights Storylining Designing data stories
  25. 25. A business storyline • Our NPS improved 6% • It was 34% in 4Q18. Now it’s at 40% in 2Q19 • Despite lower satisfaction with our Support, our NPS grew • This increase in NPS was mainly due to better Product Quality & Research Gladiator’s storyline • The Emperor asks General Maximus to take control of Rome and give it back to people • The ambitious Prince murders the emperor. • Maximus is sold as a gladiator slave. His family is murdered • Maximus grows famous, fights the Prince in the arena, and wins • He joins his family in death. Rome is in the hands of the people Outlines are the backbone on which you flesh out your story. This section explains how to create storylines Storylines are plot outlines. They summarize the entire story Notice “characters” in red. All stories have characters, human or otherwise. 25
  26. 26. 3. Convert analysis into messages by adding context 26 DO IT: Add context to your analysis 1. Take each relevant analysis 2. Convert it to a message for the audience by adding context CHECK IT: Verify these yourself  Will your audience understand the messages without explanation?  Will your audience understand why this message is relevant? Analysis doesn’t mean anything to people. When it does, it’s a message. We do this by adding context. Three ways to add context are: 1. Compare with similar numbers. Our $15 mn sales is $3 mn more than last year, $1 mn below budget, and twice our nearest competitors. 2. Explain with analogies. If we stopped producing, it’ll take 3 months to dispose our excess inventory of $2 mn. 3. Add business interpretation. Usage is correlated with discounts. For every $1 discount, customer LTV increases by $24. Frame each analysis as a message that the audience will understand and find relevant
  27. 27. 4. Structure the messages into a pyramid or a tree Conventional approach is to explain how we did the analysis & found the insight Insight is lost in the set of slides, takes too long to reach to the first insight. Instead, start with insight first, and then take the audience through arguments to support it. Starts with the main message, and then answers why & how the insight makes sense. Title Analysis section 1 Methodology Insight Analysis section 2 Methodology Insight Insight that answers a business question Supporting argument 1 Methodology Supporting reference Supporting argument 2 Methodology Supporting reference
  28. 28. Designing data stories Step 4 Understanding the audience & intent Finding insights Storylining Designing data stories
  29. 29. How the data should be interpreted decides the type of chart to be used 29 https://gramener.github.io/visual-vocabulary-vega/ Deviation Change- over-Time Spatial Ranking Correlation Part-to- Whole Flow Magnitude Distribution
  30. 30. Class Xth English Marks Distribution 0 5,000 10,000 15,000 20,000 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60 65 70 75 80 85 90 95 100
  31. 31. 4 type of annotations help the audience understand your intent 0 5,000 10,000 15,000 20,000 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60 65 70 75 80 85 90 95 100 Marks # students Teachers add marks to stop some students from failing This chart shows Class 10 students’ English marks in Tamil Nadu, India, in 2011. The X-axis has the mark a student has scored. The Y-axis has the # of students who scored that mark. This is a bell curve. But the spike at 35 (the mark at which students pass) is unusual. Teachers must be adding marks to some of the students who are likely to fail by a small margin. Large number of students score exactly 35 marks Few (but not 0) students score between 30-35 What’s unusual Large number of students score 35 marks. Few (but not 0) students score between 30-35 Only some students get this benefit. Identify a fair policy that will be applied consistently. Summarize the chart in its title Don’t describe the chart. Don’t write the question to answer. Write the answer itself. Like a headline. Explain the chart How should the user read it? What do you say when you talk through it? Explain what the visual is. Then the axes. Then its contents. Then the inference. Recommend an action How should I act on this? You need to change the audience. (Otherwise, you made no difference.) Highlight essential elements What should the user focus their eyes on? Point it out. Interpret what they’re seeing – in words.
  32. 32. Insights and Story telling approach 32 Stage 1- Identify Business Problem Define the problem statement by understanding: • What is the basic need and desired outcome? • Who will benefit? • What is the impact? • What is the success criteria? Stage 2- Translate to Data Problem • Breakdown the problem statement into multiple use- cases • Connect each use case with a data set • Understand any limitations on data sources- Internal and External? Stage 4- Translate to Business Answer • Stitch insights from individual use case to create a story • Connect data story to help in better decision making • Measure success Stage 3- Data Answer Target each use case with data through: • EDA and transformation • Modelling • Generating insights • Sales Rep • Data Consultant • Account Manager • Solution Lead • Analyst Lead • Data Consultant • Account Manager • Solution Architect • Solution Lead • Analyst Lead • Data Consultant • Data Scientist • Solution Architect • Solution Lead • Data Consultant • Account Manager • Solution Lead
  33. 33. 8 super spreaders are responsible for 2/3rd of all suspected cases in the district 33 This visual represents the Covid-19 suspects in a district Each dot is a suspect. Red tested positive, Green negative, Grey awaiting results and Blue not tested yet Contact tracing for 40 positive cases resulted in ~1,400 suspected cases, an average of 35 contacts per person Top 8 super spreaders are responsible for two- thirds of all suspected cases Of these 1,400 suspected cases, test results are waited for roughly 5% of the cases. Among the declared results 11% are positive One positive patient also came in contact with 11 people from another district
  34. 34. Thank You! Anand Madhav @classicwild /anandmadhav

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