Time, space and my placing: The biggest games yet


The horrific desperation of the underprivileged from the favela is sadly but a Rio sideshow to the battles of mankind’s most physically elite. And for mankind, the stakes are even higher.


The billions of dollars spent on executing strategies during and after the 2016 Olympics will change the way you see the world forever. No longer are those charged with protecting and building the worlds biggest brands simply looking to define large cohorts of prospective customers using the board traditional geography, age, education and general opinion… they are coming specifically for you.

Ever since the dot com ‘big-bang’ over 15 years ago, most of us have been leaving a digital trail which for many years has had the marketers on our scent. Now thanks to some incredibly sophisticated analytics, pocket super computers, brilliant data mashups and a somewhat oblivious consumer, the marketers are now leaving the digital trail and you likely don’t even know you’re following it.

To seed or not to seed that is the question?

So we know segmentation of a marketplace allows firms to group populations into unique cohorts with distinctive characteristics. Demographic, geographic, psychological and behavioral attributes have long been used to chop up the market enabling bespoke campaigns to maximize revenues within specific groups. However in today’s hyper competitive market these broad brush approaches are no longer sufficient.

Intuition and market specific knowledge often seed the segmentation process. When seeding a fixed number of segments is expected. Say male or female groups or those aged 20-30, 30-40 and 40 and above. Segments are then defined trough combinations of each class variable, but are only useful if unique compared to all other segments…. and for the inexperienced, this might take a while.

Competitive advantage is no longer gained by those who have access to customer data, but is realized only by what you do with it. The constant streams of data flowing to brand owners make it unthinkable to consider all combinations of segmentation variables. How then will the global super bands squeeze competitive advantage during the Olympics?

Throw away your seeds and segment on the fly. Modern machine learning allows detection of patterns long before a human considers looking for variables. The algorithm decides the number of clusters. This can produce micro-segmentation with groups described by time and place.

Hey look at me!

So you want to play with the big boys and girls at the big end of town… First you’ll need to create and monitor dynamic micro-segmentation. Kerry Stokes’ Seven West Media (7WM) demonstrates how this is done. In Australia a few million people will likely install the ‘7 Olympics’ app to stream games coverage. In order to do so you give away access to your Facebook or Google account, including friend feeds and friend profiles. You provide your location, even when the app is not in use and your photos. All this is streaming back as 7WM desire.

By connecting with just one of the thousands of brands being thrust at us during the Olympics hundreds of millions of consumers will sign over more then possibly considered. Mashing unique segment data with historic campaign metrics, data science enables marketers to predict sales likelihood from each segment, and target those with the highest revenue potential. Connecting consumers with a brands across multiple channels and monitoring responses in real time provides environments for individually crafted experiences targeted specifically at an individual.

Consider Coca-Cola Amatil (CCA) purchasing a media product for Mount Franklin branded water. CCA segmentation may lead to TV ads in the afternoon when most sales are made, and print ads located next to an article on state schools as young parents are more likely to purchase water then soft drinks. But what about targeting someone 15 minutes after exercise or the young parent segment right as they approach a store they are likely to enter.

As 7WM purchase advertising space across other websites and ‘digital spaces’ they can push content right to you depending on your time and place. And we can thank ‘Apple Pay’ for recently closing the loop. When you pay for the goods using your swipe payment phone you validate the predictive models and further optimise segment selection.

U are so good

The seemingly instinctive imaginary of a brand and its products inevitably leads to a purchase decision. Although each segment is unique from all other segments, they cannot be expected to be made up of the same personality types or necessarily have similar needs. Given the stated ability to target individuals within segments how then do we best craft and individuals perceptions?

If you’re prepared to back a digital strategy, the IBM system U will crawl your target consumes social networks to map their big 5 personality traits, fundamental human needs, individual values and social behaviors. Building a brand position requires different approaches for those with high self-expression to those with high need for challenge. Big data technologies like these allow the marketer to personalise the message to be most effective.

Thanks to a seemingly innocent mobile app allowing you to stream you favorite Olympic sports, some very sophisticated marketers are leading you up a path to a purchase. Perhaps you don’t believe this will lead you to purchase, but at the very least they will change the world around you.

Garry Brittain: 213544241


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