Predictive Analysis by Leveraging Temporal User Behavior


Publication date: October 22, 2018

Charles Chen, Sungchul Kim, Hung Bui, Ryan A. Rossi, Branislav Kveton, Eunyee Koh, Razvan Bunescu

The rapid growth of mobile devices has resulted in the generation of a large number of user behavior logs that contain latent intentions and user interests. However, exploiting such data in real-world applications is still difficult for service providers due to the complexities of user behavior over a sheer number of possible actions that can vary according to time. In this work, a time-aware RNN model, TRNN, is proposed for predictive analysis from user behavior data. First, our approach predicts next user action more accurately than the baselines including the n-gram models as well as two recently introduced time-aware RNN approaches. Second, we use TRNN to learn user embeddings from sequences of user actions and show that overall the TRNN embeddings outperform conventional RNN embeddings. Similar to how word embeddings benefit a wide range of task in natural language processing, the learned user embeddings are general and could be used in a variety of tasks in the digital marketing area. This claim is supported empirically by evaluating their utility in user conversion prediction, and preferred application prediction. According to the evaluation results, TRNN embeddings perform better than the baselines including Bag of Words (BoW), TFIDF and Doc2Vec. We believe that TRNN embeddings provide an effective representation for solving practical tasks such as recommendation, user segmentation and predictive analysis of business metrics.

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