The gap between businesses who understand, embrace and transform themselves to utilize analytics and those who don’t is widening.

Executives utilizing analytics also say the data provides “substantial” or “significant” information to “create a competitive advantage” with the percentage increasing to 58 percent from 37 percent in the first such study a year ago.

So concludes a new report, “Analytics: The Widening Divide” from MIT’s Sloan Management Review and the IBM (NYSE: IBM) Institute for Business Value.

The study is based on information gathered from more than 4,500 executives.

Further, businesses that are embracing analytics successfully are embracing what the report calls “three key competencies:”

  • Competency #1: Information management
  • Competency #2: Analytics skills and tools
  • Competency #3: Data-oriented culture

“Transformed organizations are learning to use customer analytics that yield something better than broad statistical averages. Instead of segmenting customers along two or three dimensions — sales and interactions, for example, or income, age and geography — they are analyzing a broader set of customer dimensions,” the report says.

“These dimensions can include everything from transactional patterns to psychographic profiles of how customers prefer to shop, their likelihood of product purchases and their cumulative value to the company. The result is a highly individualized understanding, otherwise known as a ‘market of one,’ making authentic customer engagement possible.”

Read more details and download the report here.

Get the latest news alerts: Follow LTW at Twitter.