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A Man Walks Into A Bar- A Cautionary Tale About Data and Privacy

Published 25 May 2011 by , CANDDi
Read this in about 2 minutes

So a man walks into a bar - bear with me- this isn't the start of a joke. The bar is his local, and the landlord Dave knows his name. Let's call our man Bob.

So a man walks into a bar - bear with me: this isn’t the start of a joke. The bar is his local, and the landlord Dave knows his name. Let’s call our man Bob.

Dave knows that Bob likes to drink Guinness and that he always has a packet of cheese and onion crisps with his first pint. Dave knows that Bob is married with two kids and that he’s a Manchester City fan.

When Bob walks into the pub, Dave starts pulling him a pint of Guinness straight away and grabs him a pack of crisps. He opens up the conversation with ‘Hi Bob. Wife and kids OK? What about City at the weekend eh?”

Bob likes this. It makes him feel welcome. And as a result he comes back time and again. It’s good, personal customer service.

Dave started to recognise Bob and remember his preference for Guinness and cheese and onion crisps after he came in to the pub a few times. He got to know Bob’s name and has remembered it ever since. But imagine if he didn’t. Imagine that every time Bob went into the pub he got treated as a completely knew, unknown customer. Would he have the same loyalty? Unlikely.


Now imagine another scenario. Imagine Dave keeps detailed notes about Bob and shares them with other landlords in the area. Bob walks into a completely new pub one day and the landlord Mavis says “Hello Bob. Pint of Guinness is it? And how about a packet of cheese and onion?”

That is frankly spooky.

All this imagining has a purpose. CANDDi is analogous to Dave in the first example, or to any good salesperson in a retail environment. It pays attention to what people like or what they are looking for. It recognises them when they come back and tries to give them what they want. CANDDi Prospect Analytics gives your digital presence some of the attributes of a great salesperson.

What CANDDi doesn’t do is the second scenario. We don’t believe in sharing data built up through a personal relationship between customer and brand. We think it’s a bit icky and so do many of the people we speak to.

This is an important distinction and it’s a theme we will be returning to soon on this blog.

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