Bubbles and Data
Collective conscious bubbles, not market bubbles. Every single social media outlet is upset with their participants playing in these collective conscious bubbles. How dare we not experience the world at large-versus our affinity initiated and algorithmically accentuated careful feed of just what others think is best for us? How could we all have been sucked into the warm embrace of others that agree with us?
Depending on where you sit on our current political see saw, this was either a winning strategy or a complete outrage. Regardless of where any of us sit politically, the ability to understand these “bubbles” and what goes on inside of them is a view too important to ignore. After all Twitter, Facebook and the all the media barons vying for 2020 are now trying to introduce us to alternate bubbles vs alternate facts. Understanding bubbles is a winning strategy for all researchers and marketeers.
The Data of Intent
We physically live in bubbles, work in bubbles, educate/recreate in bubbles and gather in bubbles. Bubbles are a brief moment in time that often defy capture and burst before we really understand their essence. These moments happen at ballgames, concerts, schools, holiday gatherings, parks, offices and events. If showing up is 90% of life, then where, when and with who is the path to understanding why any us of go anywhere. As marketers, the collection of data to understand these important gathering and moments in time is essential. The input is a key to how we continue to refine our messaging to individuals on a mass level.
New lens-different view
A popped bubble serves no purpose, its just gone. Inside every bubble are real people doing real things. In spite of the best efforts from those of us in digital media to get people to opt in, share and download, the participation level is low and limits our audience understanding. To really see the world we need to view it one set of eyeballs at a time demonstrating intent with as wide an aperture as possible. The narrow focus we have all been forced to accept doesn’t capture what’s going on in any bubble. Small audience samples really don’t accomplish the same as broad audience capture. All of our tools of the past; cookies, wi-fi, beacons and apps, whether aggregated or extrapolated-are not designed or effective in the measurement of bubbles. It’s time for “all in versus opt in.”
Bubbles, Bubbles, everywhere
Everyday in 100,000’s of US locations people gather and, in the aggregate, it represents the greatest untapped data source available. Sporting and entertainment venues, category based retail, events of every possible variety are all bubbles laden with the data of intent. They appear for all the common reasons; shopping, communing, learning, participating, communication and recreating. They change by time of day, day of week and year-to-year. And inside these bubbles are real people out participating in real life-signaling interests and intent significantly more insightful that where we might have clicked on any of our devices. This data has the power of delivering the insights and efficiencies previously available to on line behavior and apply it physical life behavior.
The right tools for the task
All of our old tools have been designed to penetrate and dissect audience-not a pretty site when applied to bubbles. New techniques are at our disposal to capture these moments in time and the essence of who, what, when and maybe why that bubbles exists or existed. Understanding a bubble is not an easy task without new tools. Success will yield a new view with an ability to identify participants versus narrowing media choices and hope our target is participating. It’s a refinition of our craft as marketers and researchers. We get to look at the world one person at a time at specific moments in time. Not all bubbles are bad and none of them are the same.