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Thread: How companies learn your secrets....

  1. #1

    How companies learn your secrets....

    ....and get you to buy their baby products, for example.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/19/ma...nes&emc=tha210
    The cardiologist's diet: - If it tastes good spit it out!

  2. #2
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    I read that online first and then saw it yesterday in the magazine. I thought it was fascinating! Who knew...?
    Chacun à son goût!

  3. #3
    It comes as no surprise. Amazon has it perfected!

    Even if you accidentally reach their site you will receive an ad for that particular product. They even track the food categories you prefer and the type of books you read - mysteries, cookbooks, historical novels, etc. You don't actually have to buy them, just looking is enough to trigger their attention.

    I ordered Cuisinart accessories as Christmas gifts two years ago and still get offers on all things Cuisinart, from time to time.
    The cardiologist's diet: - If it tastes good spit it out!

  4. #4
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    Exactly, ADM. credit card=tracking device.

    the methods used to anaylze info patterns are interesting, though.

    Ever shop at a store where they ask for your zip code? it's all grist for the mill.

  5. #5
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    Another scary thing happens on a different BB I frequent. On their sidebar ads, it will show the exact same product I had browsed on the LOFT or Nordstrom's website, for example, even if I was browsing on a different day. Very creepy.

    I thought the Target article was fascinating. Not just the loss of privacy, but the algorithm of seeing what people buy when they are expecting, etc. I guess we all are not as unique as we think!
    Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by BucknellAlum View Post
    Another scary thing happens on a different BB I frequent. On their sidebar ads, it will show the exact same product I had browsed on the LOFT or Nordstrom's website, for example, even if I was browsing on a different day. Very creepy.
    I thought that was creepy, but it gets funny when you follow links to items other people are talking about and you have no interest in for yourself. They probably have some very strange ideas about what each of us like and dislike.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by heavy hedonist View Post
    Ever shop at a store where they ask for your zip code? it's all grist for the mill.
    I have to punch in zip code at the gasoline pump. Is that for my own protection Will become more obnoxious next time the store asks for my zip code. I'm very protective of my information and stopped shopping at Radio Shack a long time ago. (It was a good joke on a Seinfeld episode.)
    Quote Originally Posted by BucknellAlum View Post
    Another scary thing happens on a different BB I frequent. On their sidebar ads, it will show the exact same product I had browsed on the LOFT or Nordstrom's website, for example, even if I was browsing on a different day. Very creepy.
    Occasionally I succeed in clicking my way to the option of blocking those ads.
    Last edited by swedish cook; 02-20-2012 at 02:14 PM.
    We give dogs time we can spare, space we can spare and love we can spare. And in return, dogs give us their all. It's the best deal man has ever made.
    -M. Acklam

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by swedish cook View Post
    I have to punch in zip code at the gasoline pump. Is that for my own protection .
    I <think> that is more or less to verify that you are the owner of the credit card. Someone could have stolen your card w/out knowing where you live, so there's at least a modicum of safety attached to that request.
    "I cook with wine; sometimes I even add it to the food."
    ---W.C.Fields

  9. #9
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    Yes, you provide your ZIP code at the gas pump because your credit/debit card *should* be verified in some way. It actually irks me when it's not required: I've never had a credit card or wallet/purse stolen, but I think it's ridiculous that any person should be allowed to swipe a card and blithely make purchases without some effort at verification on the part of the vendor.

    As for stores asking for a ZIP code - is that seriously seen as an infringement on privacy? What, exactly, do you think is being compromised? If you're paying with a credit card, your digital footprint is already left; if you're paying with cash, what do you think they're going to do with it, follow you home? Knowing where customers live/how far they travel to shop at the store is valuable marketing information that's used in advertising and store expansion strategies. The Container Store used to ask for a phone number every time a customer made a purchase. For me, that was more intrusive than some general ZIP code, so when the clerk would ask, "May I get your phone number?" I would respond politely, "No." and that was that.
    Happiness is not a goal, it is a byproduct. - Eleanor Roosevelt

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by swedish cook View Post
    I have to punch in zip code at the gasoline pump. Is that for my own protection Will become more obnoxious next time the store asks for my zip code. I'm very protective of my information and stopped shopping at Radio Shack a long time ago. (It was a good joke on a Seinfeld episode.)


    Occasionally I succeed in clicking my way to the option of blocking those ads.
    Sometimes the zip code thing at stores is actually to see where customers are coming from and may result in a location opening closer to you! Which is a good thing in my book.

    No need to be obnoxious, just simply say that you don't give that information out and the clerk will move on. I've never had a problem anywhere with that tactic including Radio Shack (they really don't need my info, since the only thing I buy there is watch batteries).
    ______

    Elizabeth

    Walking Towards Wellness, my personal challenge to walk 10,000 steps per day in 2014 while living with and managing a chronic illness. Walk with me.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by heavy hedonist View Post
    Exactly, ADM. credit card=tracking device.

    the methods used to anaylze info patterns are interesting, though.

    Ever shop at a store where they ask for your zip code? it's all grist for the mill.
    Mari, completely ot, but when I click on your blog link in your sig line it says it doesn't exist. As a former resident of Buff Land I was hoping to read it.
    ______

    Elizabeth

    Walking Towards Wellness, my personal challenge to walk 10,000 steps per day in 2014 while living with and managing a chronic illness. Walk with me.

  12. #12
    The only store I've ever had an issue with over giving out my information was New York & Co. I was given a gift card and an extra coupon (a coupon that was given when the person who gave me the gift card made a donation to a charity). I went to use the coupon and the woman asked for my phone number. I told her I didn't want to give it out. She said I couldn't use a coupon without giving out the information. I told her I didn't have to give it out before (I had used another coupon a week or two prior without issue). She was quite adamant that she could not and would not make the sale without me giving my phone number, but assured me that they don't sell my information. Sure! She even told me I could make one up or give someone else's. So, I told her to put in her number. She said she couldn't do that. I was irked and it was really just the principle at that point. So, I just said I wouldn't buy anything then and was about to walk out when another clerk said she'd ring it up.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canice View Post
    Yes, you provide your ZIP code at the gas pump because your credit/debit card *should* be verified in some way. It actually irks me when it's not required: I've never had a credit card or wallet/purse stolen, but I think it's ridiculous that any person should be allowed to swipe a card and blithely make purchases without some effort at verification on the part of the vendor.

    As for stores asking for a ZIP code - is that seriously seen as an infringement on privacy? What, exactly, do you think is being compromised? If you're paying with a credit card, your digital footprint is already left; if you're paying with cash, what do you think they're going to do with it, follow you home? Knowing where customers live/how far they travel to shop at the store is valuable marketing information that's used in advertising and store expansion strategies. The Container Store used to ask for a phone number every time a customer made a purchase. For me, that was more intrusive than some general ZIP code, so when the clerk would ask, "May I get your phone number?" I would respond politely, "No." and that was that.
    Good! That's actually what I've been assuming until reading some of the posts. Was very pleased when Container Store stopped asking for phone number that I politely declined to give for many years (am a big and loyal customer since the 1980's).
    Confession, once upon a time I was working in marketing and it was my job to track and lure customers Guess I should have a more forgiving attitude
    We give dogs time we can spare, space we can spare and love we can spare. And in return, dogs give us their all. It's the best deal man has ever made.
    -M. Acklam

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by ADM View Post
    It comes as no surprise. Amazon has it perfected!
    I once read a comment from a woman who said that based on the items they suggested she would like, Amazon clearly knew her a lot better than her husband did.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by BucknellAlum View Post
    Another scary thing happens on a different BB I frequent. On their sidebar ads, it will show the exact same product I had browsed on the LOFT or Nordstrom's website, for example, even if I was browsing on a different day. Very creepy.
    After yesterday's online shopping blinking ads were annoying me this morning. Some searching took me to NAI's website where I selected to opt-out of all. The sidebar ads for DH's polo shirts disappeared
    We give dogs time we can spare, space we can spare and love we can spare. And in return, dogs give us their all. It's the best deal man has ever made.
    -M. Acklam

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