Everything is Changing? (Moving from a social world to a personal world)

With the onslaught of privacy issues and Facebook (aka spambook) becoming a one way mass advertising  platforms we are starting to see the froth come off of the likes of Facebook and Linkedin. Advertisers are increasingly looking to reach particular market segments as opposed to blasting messages out across the whole of Facebook.

There is an evolutionary approach getting started and turns this mass broadcast “target the customer mentality” on its head. (Hugely inspired by Doc Searls projectVRM)

I like these two quotes from his latest book The Intention Economy:

Relationships between customers and vendors will be voluntary and genuine, with loyalty anchored in mutual respect and concern, rather than coercion. So rather than targeting, capturing, acquiring, managing, locking in, and owning customers, as if they were slaves or cattle, vendors will earn the respect of customers who are now free to bring far more to the market‘s table than the old vendor-based systems ever contemplated, much less allowed.“

“Likewise, rather than guessing what might get the attention of customers – or what might drive“ them like cattle – vendors will respond to the actual intention of customers. Once customers‘ expressions of intent become abundant and clear, the range of economic interplay between supply and demand will widen, and its sum will increase. The result we will call the Intention Economy.“


  • The Human being: Bombarded with irrelevant advertising, marketing, messaging, social sharing noise that is not meaningful to me and my lifestyle.
  • The brands: Today a large majority of companies spending billions on advertising/marketing to get attention via guesswork approaches.

How about this for a better way?

A human being sets up their own personal portal/platform.  This is where I personally live and breathe online and manage my lifestyle on my own terms and on my own turf. (Think a kind of CRM for ME)

I keep my medical data, family data,  music, movies, subscriptions everything that’s important to me in my own personal data store. I am the only person who can see it unless I open up some levels of access at my sole discretion.

I can add brands, I can take them away and eliminate you from my personal lifestyle platform at my disposal. I am in control.

How do I find out about you?

A few options:

I have a designated section of my portal that allows NEW (I am not an existing customer and/or have no existing relationship established yet) brands to run advertising programs to me.

I also will have a specific section dedicated to brands/companies I have shortlisted that are important to me for whatever reason. For example” I am travelling to New York in December 2012”. So a hotel chain may want to inform me of Christmas room deals and/or maybe a restaurant may want to advertise to me and suggest a reservation etc. These programs will be based on my intentions and the brand can spend less money trying to get my attention and market to my intention. ( far more profitable) For that I have set up my own personal Payment account and brands can place relevant programs inside my personal lifestyle management platform.

Another example of the huge business benefit “I go to the movies nearly every weekend and spend over $3,500 a year at AMC theaters with my kids. Why waste money on guesswork promoting a banner ad on Gardening world where I hardly ever go on the off chance I will visit it one day.” AMC can be one of my approved vendors and I enable them to reach me with specific offers, programs, stubs card etc.

Think of these as examples of how demand advertises to supply, rather than vice versa. It requires no guesswork about what the customer wants, or whether there is money on the table. The customer appears to the seller as a qualified Opportunity for the brand, but not (unless she so chooses) as a target for future marketing.

It’s not personal it’s business is irrelevant today for most people. everything is personal!

There is a better way and it starts with the personal. Guesswork is a thing of the past. The amount of money spent on guesswork is a massive waste time and money.

It’s about being treated as a human being. Brands have the ability to gain mutual trust, develop a connection, a willingness to listen instead of pushing product will make it a much richer experience for both parties. (And more profitable.)

However, this will only work and be a suitable solution once we as human beings say no to the existing marketing techniques that although incredibly inefficient don’t work anymore

I signed up to hear about a new car 7 days ago. I am years away from a potential new purchase and stated that. Over the last 3 days I  have received 3 voicemails, 3 e mails. I know the aim of this brand was to get 500 names and addresses into their system. ( not mine) and spent probably $5,00K so far on follow up qualification costs. I can see the conversation at the brand right now. There is someone at c level management far removed from reality saying if we get 100 sign up’s , we get one customer, therefore 500 sign up’s = 5 customers.

Broadcast and mass media advertising at its best is simply guesswork in action.

As we develop technologies and cultural approaches that puts the human being at the center of his/her own experience.

Everything is Changing? (Moving from a social world to a personal world)

4 thoughts on “Everything is Changing? (Moving from a social world to a personal world)

  1. Dshihtzu says:

    “I can add brands, I can take them away and eliminate you from my personal lifestyle platform at my disposal. I am in control.”…..

    You are opting in, which is a good thing. However, it will not be good enough for marketers who believe they have a sacred right to own any information about you they can stuff into a database and resell for eternity.

    Do you have a data model/site design in mind for the personal lifestyle platform?

    Great idea!


  2. KENNY says:

    I agree. hopefully there will be ways to own that side of the equation. the idea is you OWN your data no matter what. you can enable marketers to market to you and have stipulations they can never use your data in a certain way etc. for example : never re sell my e mail to 10 other IT publications. don’t allow companies to put cookies in my browser etc etc.

    there are a million problems to solve but the idea of reversing the supply and demand side econmics to a demand supply and take a lot of wasted money and time out of the advertising, marketimg is a very interesting problem to solve.

    i do not have a data model /site design or anything like that yet.


  3. Eric says:

    Personal.com is attempting to build that personal lifestyle platform. Their long-term vision very much mirrors Kenny’s idea. The challenge they face in achieving that long-term vision is getting marketers to relinquish your data once you end your relationship with the marketer.


  4. kenny says:

    Yes indeed. with Facebook we have this preconceived idea that marketers can “OWN” our data. we are in a FORCED opt out mode as opposed to opt in. hopefully the advent of companies like personal.com can help. also doc searls as a great number of resources at projectVRM.


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