Targeted Online Marketing Got Creepier Again!


Targeted online marketing got creepier again!

Good news everyone – the world of online marketing has become a whole lot creepier again!

Earlier this year I was already impressed with Facebook’s efforts that made me look over my shoulder. I went to Taiwan on holiday this summer. When I got back I of course wanted to be the envy of my friends. Naturally, I uploaded some great photos on to Facebook.

To illustrate to my friends what kind of sophisticated globetrotter I am, I tagged myself in the photos including the places I had been (where was this photo taken?). I was pretty impressed by the fact that without me even putting a first letter in, Facebook already suggested places of where the photo was taken. It actually was exactly the same spot where I took my photos, without me even having to put the information in myself. Surely Mark Zuckerberg was hiding in my suitcase, making a note of each photo I had taken? Turns out he wasn’t.

With most smartphones these days, you will save a GPS location with the photos you take. Hence making it easy for Facebook to freak you out, by telling you where you have been.

But wait, it gets better.

There’s a new kid on the block. A new kid in the name of Ditto Labs. This is where it gets cool. 

Ditto Labs is a company that specialises in photo recognition. Nothing new, really. But the way in which they apply their software is quite new. In their own words – ‘1.8 billion photos are shared on Social Media every day. Have you seen what they say about your brand?’

The company specialises in searching brand names and logos in photos that are uploaded to social media networks. For example if you’re drinking a Heineken beer and are smiling, it is likely you have a positive association with the Heineken brand. The more photos with a Heineken, the stronger your connection with the brand is! Online marketers will therefore have a better insight in what you like, what you are likely to be interested in and how they can best engage with you. Combine this with iBeacon technology (what is Apple iBeacon?) and you have a winning combination.

Most marketers are a big fan of remarketing, but this is even taking it a step further. It is more than keeping track of your Google searches and website visits. It looks into which brands you would like to be associated with. With this information the sky is the limit. You will know exactly what people think about your brand, which other brands it is associated with and what the overall sentiment is. Truly a marketer’s dream.

In this video, Ditto Labs explains how it works and what you could really do with it.


So if you think of it – yes, it is very creepy. It goes to the extent that marketers will start knowing more about you than you do yourself.

But on the other hand we think it’s a great step forward. First of all it means that marketers are interested in finding out what we want to be offered. They are actually listening to us. Secondly this also means more targeted communications. Instead of being bombarded with advertisements you have zero interest in, you may find that eventually you start enjoy advertising as it fits seamlessly into what you are looking for.

What are your thoughts? We’d love to hear from you!


Feature image courtesy of Ditto Labs

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