Tuesday, April 24, 2007

We need it

Seth Godin writes about the importance of personalizing the consumer experience. Definitely the way to go. The Amazon.com example is where all brands should be. But I warn against going further.

I've been observing the behavioral targeting space for a while and I'm getting concerned we're going too far with our 'one-to-one marketing'.

To be very clear: Behavioral Targeting has nothing to do with 'one-to-one marketing'. It's just another way of repurposing the old media distribution model in a more efficient way. I'm a big fan of Behavioral Targeting in the short term if it's non-intrusive, non-creepy and benefits the consumer. In the long run, today's Behavioral Targeting is pretty much doomed. It's just another arms race how to get intrusive messages in front of the consumer. And the consumer found their own weapons of cookies rejection and cookies deletion to fight back.

Where does this leave us? Instead of trying to continue on the old, beaten path, we need to develop behavioral targeting tools that consumers can control. They need to be in control of their experience and they need to express the desire to receive targeted messages.

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