Using Decision Management to improve the Amazon Daily Deal

January 2, 2013

in Analytics, Business Rules, Decision Management

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I don’t know how many of you have kindles but my family is awash in them. Several of us get the Amazon Daily Deal emails too and, of course, the kindle displays an advertisement for the daily deal when it is charging or idle. And while all this is fairly up-to-the-minute in terms of marketing it still lacks true personalization and the effective application of Decision Management would make it better. Let’s take today as an example.

My 14 year old has a kindle. He reads a lot of fantasy and adventure novels (he’s a big fan of books like Ranger’s Apprentice and The Hunger Games for instance. Today his kindle was sitting there promoting Man’s Search for Meaning – not exactly his usual fare. Why? Because this is the “main” book on the daily deal and everyone sees it (I certainly see it on my kindle).

How likely is my son to buy this book? Not very likely – he’s much more likely to find one of the other books on the daily deal appealing - Deviants (The Dust Chronicles). But this is not promoted to him. A Decision Management approach would regard the decision about which book to promote from within the daily deal as a micro-decision. Micro decisions are a concept Neil and I came up with in Smart Enough Systems to describe what happens when you go from a hidden decision (no decision is really made, everyone is treated the same) to a truly personalized decision. Amazon “knows” which books have been downloaded to which kindle and even knows if you finished the book or not. Some simple rules to exclude book types the person never reads and some analytics to predict propensity to buy each of the daily deals and a personalized, more effective offer could be made on each kindle.

So how often do you treat all your customers exactly the same? How often do you make the same offer, display the same content or list the same menu options? Could you do better? Apply decision management and you could.

Happy new year.

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