What is Meant by “Flocking Together” Virtually?

Blog Administrator | Analyzing Data, Data Management, Data Profiling, Data Quality | , , ,

By David Loshin

In my last two posts, we have been reviewing the concepts of contact methods that have in the past been used for identifying a customer’s location, and the ramifications of an increasing trend in which the contact mechanism is less reliable for establishing a location.

In particular, the traditional use of telephone numbers to isolate a customer’s
location and subsequent use of geo-demographic profiles associated with
locations is less trustworthy, while at the same time, your customers are
relying more on virtual channels of communication.

If the traditional approaches for location-based demographics are becoming less
reliable, are there other methods for “location-based” segmentation using
virtual contact methods? In other words, do birds of a feather still flock
together online?

In my opinion, the answer is unequivocally yes. A fundamental driver for online
communities is shared interests, and many communities have evolved wither
focusing on specific behavioral characteristics, likes, and dislikes (an example
might be an online community designed around knitting) or around sharing
information about common ideas.

Even the terse 140-character format of an SMS-based framework like Twitter
allows using hash tags to define the boundaries around areas of interest. Online
games also provide fertile ground for analyzing customer characteristics and

So even as the credibility of traditional contact mechanisms for customer
behavior segmentation and analysis diminishes, there is an emerging opportunity
for evaluating customer behaviors that are virtually “geo-demographic.”

More next time…