On the eve of the launch of Geoffrey Miller’s book “Spent: Sex, Evolution, and Consumer Behavior”, we discuss the key role of openness, the importance of dialogue, and the true reason for advertising. http://weigend.com/files/audio/GeoffreyMillerAndreasWeigend_2009.05.17.mp3
Geoffrey, a tenured professor at the University of New Mexico, combines an evolutionary framework with a data driven mindset to create insights about consumers. Openness, perhaps the least studied of the Big Five personality traits, and inherited to a large degree, is often underestimated. As we reflect on how our time as graduate students in Cognitive Psychology at Stanford has shaped us – Geoffrey worked with Roger Shepard and I with David Rumelhart — we discuss how marketers used to force-communicate customers, and got away with ignoring the deeply social characteristics of humans. Furthermore, Geoffrey explains, the traditional goal of advertising was to demonstrate to a few potential buyers the large symbolic significance of a product for the broad masses. Communication now having primarily become C2C, consumer to consumer, and C2W, consumer to world: what is the impact of the Social Data Revolution on advertising and consumer behavior?