Thursday, February 23, 2017

Why account-based marketing #abm is terrifying - David Siegel's warning

Account-based marketing offers the promise of providing precisely targeted information to you and me - although, as I previously noted, it has to get a little better at targeting.

Sounds great. What could go wrong?

By Andreas Bohnenstengel, CC BY-SA 3.0 de, Link

Plenty, if you believe David Siegel of Two Sigma, who just authored something for Business Insider entitled Infinite personalization is making us dumber.

While Siegel started by referencing political ramifications, I'll concentrate on the business ones.

[P]ostings in a news feed are carefully selected by algorithms in a very proprietary way, mainly to get us to use the service more. This makes good business sense, but it subliminally impacts our thinking. Like streaming music recommendations, these algorithms are very good at filtering out postings that we’d dislike, potentially robbing us of alternative points of view.

What difference does this make in a BUSINESS sense?

The technology of infinite personalization is getting so good that it’s debatable whether we choose our information sources, or the other way around. Clearly, that's good business for the providers of these algorithms and the companies that use them to advertise and sell.

I'll use a personal example.

Last Saturday morning, my wife noticed a black screen of pining for the fjords on our old desktop computer in the office. After I proceeded to start Windows normally, I noticed that I had no wireless connection. After turning it off and turning it on again didn't solve the problem, I ran a troubleshooter and was informed that I had no drivers for a wireless connection. Funny, I had those drivers a few days ago (although I've had to manually connect to wireless a lot lately). Now I could have proceeded to fix the problem, but this is an old computer.

How old?

It's running Windows Vista.

So I thought to myself, perhaps this #IAmNotTrendy guy ought to think about an upgrade.

In theory, this meant that I would survey the vast amount of information available on the type of computer that I desired, and then make a rational, quantifiable decision on the best computer based upon neutral criteria.

I didn't do that.

Instead, I went to the Best Buy website and let it present some laptops that it thought would be good for me. After looking at a grand total of two laptops, I selected a brand with which I was familiar. (I will not reveal the brand that I chose, other than to note that it is not GO, and it is not IQ, but is somewhere in between.)

Every day, we make decisions based upon what is presented before us on our various screens.

So how do we break out?
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