Jonah Staw, co-founder and CEO of LittleMissMatched, heads-up a lifestyle brand that is based on "innovative and creative mixing and mismatching." LittleMissMatched launched in 2004 with a collection of mismatched socks sold in odd numbers to encourage girls of all ages to express themselves. The "nothing matches but anything goes" philosophy knocked people's socks off, and sales jumped from $5 million to $25 million in just three years. Today, the LittleMissMatched product line includes everything from socks, winterwear, and sleepwear to books, bedding, and furniture for mismatched mavens of all ages. LittleMissMatched products range in … Read more
Marketers ought to be aware that some consumers are suspicious about the phenomenon known as "behavioral targeting," a new report from eMarketer says.
Called "Behavioral Targeting Attitudes: The Privacy Issue," the report released Friday explores the digital ad strategy, which collects consumer information and uses it to serve up ads that they may find interesting or relevant. This has been the basis for high-profile programs like Facebook's Social Ads and MySpace's HyperTargeting, as well as Google's extraordinarily successful AdSense. (That's why you'll see ads for vacation homes in Gmail after you'… Read more
Rob Walker, the author of the just-released "Buying in," is a marketing connoisseur, an expert in reading the cultural underpinnings of commerce. In his Consumed column for the New York Times Magazine, he examines how technology shapes consumer culture and vice versa. In tomorrow's piece he elaborates on the history of headphones, and how their role evolved in modern society, from the first Bose set to the Sony Walkman to the iPod earbuds.
With the miniaturization of devices, the public exposure of personal space increased. I remember that when I was 14, I came home from school, … Read more
I can't say for certain that ISPs, online advertising networks, and other big Web companies are already tracking our Web use and sending us ads and other information based on conclusions they draw from our unique browsing history.
But it wouldn't surprise me one bit if they were. And if they aren't already, I know it's only a matter of time.
Web sites have been using persistent cookies to remember you from session to session for a long time. Usually, sites know only the site you arrived from and the site you go to when you … Read more
WASHINGTON--As advocacy groups bristle at online advertisers' increasingly sophisticated targeting techniques, top privacy lawyers at Google and AOL on Thursday backed "opt-out" technology as a way to give Internet surfers more say in the process--although they admitted it's far from perfect.
At the moment, a group called the Network Advertising Initiative allows Internet surfers to say no to targeted ads from more than a dozen major Web ad networks, including Google's DoubleClick, Yahoo and its Blue Lithium subsidiary, Microsoft's Atlas advertising unit, and AOL-owned Advertising.com and Tacoda. The system works by placing a cookie--a … Read more
Social media and Web-surfing habits have made it possible for advertisers to target their campaigns at the narrowest of niche audiences. But what happens when targeting goes beyond relevance and into insensitivity? That's something that a big digital-ad trade group has addressed in a new set of guidelines that effectively ban behavioral targeting pertaining to certain medical and psychological conditions.
The Network Advertising Initiative (NAI), which encompasses ad networks like AOL's Advertising.com and Tacoda, Yahoo's BlueLithium, and Google's DoubleClick, published the draft of its "Self-Regulatory Code of Conduct for Online Behavioral Advertising" guidelines … Read more
A New York lawmaker wants you to have the choice over whether Internet companies can serve up ads based on your actions online and who you are.
Companies like Microsoft and Yahoo are already serving ads that reflect your interests, such as Web sites you visit, and even your geography. Behaviorally targeted advertising is the vanguard of online marketing because it can lead to more sales than random ads can.
Privacy advocates say that Web surfers don't understand how much they are being tracked online, and that if they did they wouldn't like it.
With this in mind, … Read more
Crises happen. They happen to all companies and to all people. They happen in our personal lives and in our professional lives. By definition, crises bring change, big change. They can change the entire trajectory of your life or your company's future. That's why how we behave in a crisis, how we manage a crisis, is such a big deal.
For example, Yahoo is going through a crisis right now. It's attempting to reinvent itself. Microsoft's bid to buy the company further complicates matters. The way Yahoo's board handles this crisis will determine the fate of the company and its thousands of employees and shareholders. That's a pretty big deal.
One company's crisis can have a ripple effect on others. You might say that Microsoft is attempting to capitalize on Yahoo's crisis. In so doing, the software giant has created its own. Negotiating tens of billions of dollars to acquire a large company and remake its Internet business is definitely crisis material.… Read more
Steve Rubel wonders if "the Interruption Economy sacks prosperity:" "Conventional wisdom says that technology -- and nowadays the Internet -- will always continue to advance and bring with it productivity gains and prosperity. That's certainly been the case for years. However, historically there are pauses. After the benefits of the Industrial Revolution were fully realized it took awhile for the next big era to begin. I wonder if we're about to enter a similar lull now that the Information Age is arguably almost 30 years old." Rubel demands "we need new tools for … Read more
Here's another trend for 2008: From micro-loans to micro-vacations, micro-celebrities to micro-trends, speed dating to speed cooking: the "long tail" world of consumers is becoming smaller and shorter. Products, services, and experiences are being deconstructed in easier-to-digest, easier-to-afford bits, allowing consumers to collect even more experiences, as often as possible, in an even shorter time frame. Shrinking attention spans have prompted the rise of what Wired Magazine calls "snack-size media," and the hyper-personalization of online communication has led to new formats (micro-blogs, widgets, feeds, texting, etc.) that challenge long-held marketing conventions.
The emerging "economy … Read more