It is not so incredible these days to imagine how much data one company can have on you. Take Tesco for example, they not only know where you live, but what you buy, when you buy it, how you pay for it, how often you shop and even how you spend your rewards and free time. All of this data, essentially lives and develops within a company, almost like a form of bacteria…
Bacteria, as the scientists behind Danone’s Actimel will tell you, is good for you but, like many things, there is good and bad bacteria. There is also good and bad data. In many cases, less is often more!
Tesco holds all of this information, which helps them to help you with relevant promotions, to forecast demand and to earn a number of coveted awards from the marketing industry. It is quite amazing therefore, that the changes in consumer behaviour of their key target market, the middle class, went unnoticed for so long! Whilst it would be easy to say that was down to X, Y or Z, (funny how Q, R & S never get the blame isn’t it?!), I think it’s more down to the fact that organisations become obsessed with collecting as much data (often for its own sake) and simply overloading their resources.
So whilst data and insights can hold the key to eternal happiness, just remember that too much data isn’t necessarily good for you.