September 09, 2008

Presidential Election: Three Issues For Database Marketers

Sure, it is interesting to consider whether lipstick comments are or are not derogatory. While Anderson Cooper considers divisive topics that guarantee viewership and advertising revenue, we need a few questions answered ... from either candidate, regarding issues important to database marketers.

Here are three issues facing Database Marketers. Add your issues in the comments section of this post.

Issue #1 = Privacy: Where do any of the candidates stand on the issue of your personal information? Should Google be able to assemble a profile of you that spans search and advertising and blog visitation habits and browser preferences and video viewing habits and spreadsheet interests and RSS feeds consumed and e-mails sent to folks overseas? Should Abacus know what you purchased at a hundred or more retailers, then sell your information without your consent? At a much smaller level, should Restoration Hardware be able to know that you looked at drawer hinges online and then purchased a lamp in the store two days later? How far do each candidate think marketers can go before violating the privacy of a resident of the United States? Your career hinges on their opinions.

Issue #2 = Do Not Mail: Eco-friendly organizations strongly believe you shouldn't be able to use direct mail to market to consumers without consumer consent, using a separate issue (consumer preference) to further their agenda (forest protection). The government already took telemarketing off the table, direct mail is not far behind (and maybe it shouldn't be far behind, I don't know). And when direct mail falls, Google should be worried, because they are next. Did either candidate offered a stance on this issue?

Issue #3 = Work From Home: I have the ability to communicate with and work with folks in the UK in real time, from the comfort of my home office, using e-mail, phone, and Skype. So what does this mean for the individual who trudges into Bag, Borrow or Steal each day? How does the workplace change if a database marketer only needs to physically be in the office two days a week? How do our energy consumption habits change, and how much money does the garden variety database marketer save by not commuting each day? How does productivity change? Do either candidate believe you should be able to work from any place that allows you to get your job done?

Those are three issues that are relevant to database marketers. What issues should the candidates be discussing, issues that are important to you?