Marketing

To the Swiftest Go the Spoils

Posted by on April 29, 2013 at 4:18 pm

WHEN YOU SEE WORDS like “estimate” and “90 percent” flung about without supporting data, it’s wise to assume you’re dealing with a guess landing somewhere between wild and educated. But when no less than IBM does the flinging, I’m inclined to pay attention. IBM recently suggested that 90 percent of all data has been produced [...]

Zappos: Rhetoric and Reality

Posted by on February 22, 2013 at 8:57 pm

Lest I be misunderstood, let me state for the record that I love Zappos. I admire, perhaps even envy them. And I like shoes as much as the next guy. When companies attain preeminence, it is usually due to a convergence of factors. Surely Zappos is no exception. Being early to the game helped; with [...]

Five Lessons from the Instagram Fiasco

Posted by on February 12, 2013 at 3:30 pm

You know the tale: Facebook acquired Instagram; members inferred from the revised agreement that advertisers could use their photos without paying or obtaining permission; Facebook replied, in essence, “No, no, no, you misunderstand, we would never do that”; Facebook changed (“clarified”) the user agreement; Instagram subscribers left en masse; and pretty much no one blamed [...]

Mind Your Back End

Posted by on December 18, 2012 at 4:19 pm

“Brand” has lots of definitions. Conveniently and not surprisingly, there is a strong correlation between how a marketer defines “brand” and the kind of branding that that particular marketer happens to execute. I shall leave it to you decide if marketers hold to an approach because they believe in it, ferociously defend an approach because [...]

Data mining without the privacy baggage

Posted by on December 11, 2012 at 8:41 pm

Many a marketer has turned a wistful if not greedy eye upon bank databases. Therein lies untold potential to learn who buys what in order to tempt people with relevant offers. The problem, of course, is privacy. Even if conscience permitted—conscience having proven, historically, to be remarkably plastic where profits are concerned—the United States Government [...]