Cookie and Stream: How a re-targeted ad for NIB officially killed the segmentation

oh hello cookie

perhaps its because I’m a digital immigrant (first email send 1995 aged 18) but I’m still sometimes genuinely surprised and more than a little delighted at just how good our industry has become at what we do.

yesterday I was nosing around the NIB website looking at health insurance options.  I went there, by the way, as a result of word of mouth (thanks Nic) – about which the soon-to-be-released book Brandwashed by Martin Lindstrom will observe that “ninety percent of brands recommended by [a WOM experimental family called] the Morgansons were purchased by every person who entered the family’s sphere”.  we truly buy because of what other people buy.

but I digress.  the point is that I was on the NIB website and started a quote but didn’t complete the application and happily moved on with my life.

until today.

when I was served with an ad for NIB whilst watching a YouTube clip (entirely, I may ad, unrelated to health insurance) … and exclaimed to twitterpod II and beyond that “I’ve just been re-targeted”.

which is a pretty stupid / obvious / unnecessary thing for a media planner of ten years to observe.

but exclaim I did.

the fact that NIB had furnished me with a cookie then streamed an ad right at me (frequency cap of three – I checked) still filled me with a pride that what we do not just awesomely works but, more importantly, is finally delivering on the long-held promise of a segmentation of one.

because the point is that I’m not in an NIB segmentation … or at least I certainly wasn’t targeted in the first instance as one (I sought them out).  digital media allows me to be in a segment of one – a segment called ‘Chris in Sydney who clicked but didn’t follow through for a quote on 27/9/11’.

the promise of digital planning is not just the volume (there are, according to Mashable, currently 17,031,375 of these segments in Australia alone*) but that these segments aren’t discrete.  they are networked.  and that means that they’re not segments at all.

they’re nodes.

at the moment I need to manually tell my network that I interacted with an ad for NIB, but that’s becoming – certainly for the super-sharers – a passive process.

and for high-interest categories that means that not only do you not need a segmentation, but that you have the potential to instigate hundreds of super-relevant networks around an idea or piece of content.

networks that self-create and spread, from nodes just like ‘Chris in Sydney who clicked but didn’t follow through for a quote on 27/9/11’ … like I said, you can’t help but be just a little bit delighted by that.

you can also be delighted by this … enjoy …

*online population of Australia


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