Big data and the “Big Lie”:…

Big data and the “Big Lie”: the challenges facing big brand marketers by Renee DiResta.

We’ve talked about the NSA and others gathering data like it is meaningful. Renee captures another point of inaccuracy in data:

However, the flip side of “social” is what’s come to be called The Big Lie: “the gap between social norm and private reality, between expressed opinions and inner motions.” We ensure that our Facebook and LinkedIn profiles present us in our best light. Our shared audio playlists highlight the artists we’re proud to call ourselves fans of — and conceal the mass-market pop that we actually listen to when we’re alone. We use Instagram to share our most gourmet dining experiences, not our Oreo habit. There’s an important distinction between user-generated data and user-volunteered data. Targeting someone using data they generated but did not volunteer can put a brand squarely into the “creepy” zone.

To emphasize the critical point:

“the gap between social norm and private reality, between expressed opinions and inner motions.”

Although that doesn’t account for self-deception/delusion, which I suspect operates a good deal of the time.

You need only to watch the evening news to see allegedly competent people saying things that are inconsistent with commonly shared views of reality.

I think Renee’s bottom line is that turning the crank on “big data” isn’t going to result in sales. It’s a bit harder than that.

See Renee’s post for more details.

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