https://arxiv.org/abs/1703.02596v1 Customer Life Time Value Prediction Using Embeddings

We describe the Customer Life Time Value (CLTV) prediction system deployed at ASOS.com, a global online fashion retailer. CLTV prediction is an important problem in e-commerce where an accurate estimate of future value allows retailers to effectively allocate marketing spend, identify and nurture high value customers and mitigate exposure to losses. The system at ASOS provides daily estimates of the future value of every customer and is one of the cornerstones of the personalised shopping experience. The state of the art in this domain uses large numbers of handcrafted features and ensemble regressors to forecast value, predict churn and evaluate customer loyalty. We describe our system, which adopts this approach, and our ongoing efforts to further improve it. Recently, domains including language, vision and speech have shown dramatic advances by replacing handcrafted features with features that are learned automatically from data. We show that learning feature representations is a promising extension to the state of the art in CLTV modelling. We propose a novel way to generate embeddings of customers, which addresses the issue of the ever changing product catalogue and obtain a significant improvement over an exhaustive set of handcrafted features.

https://arxiv.org/abs/1703.04482v1 Social Fingerprinting: detection of spambot groups through DNA-inspired behavioral modeling

Spambot detection in online social networks is a long-lasting challenge involving the study and design of detection techniques capable of efficiently identifying ever-evolving spammers. Recently, a new wave of social spambots has emerged, with advanced human-like characteristics that allow them to go undetected even by current state-of-the-art algorithms. In this paper, we show that efficient spambots detection can be achieved via an in-depth analysis of their collective behaviors exploiting the digital DNA technique for modeling the behaviors of social network users. Inspired by its biological counterpart, in the digital DNA representation the behavioral lifetime of a digital account is encoded in a sequence of characters. Then, we define a similarity measure for such digital DNA sequences. We build upon digital DNA and the similarity between groups of users to characterize both genuine accounts and spambots. Leveraging such characterization, we design the Social Fingerprinting technique, which is able to discriminate among spambots and genuine accounts in both a supervised and an unsupervised fashion. We finally evaluate the effectiveness of Social Fingerprinting and we compare it with three state-of-the-art detection algorithms. Among the peculiarities of our approach is the possibility to apply off-the-shelf DNA analysis techniques to study online users behaviors and to efficiently rely on a limited number of lightweight account characteristics.