Big Business Knows What You're Buying and Has an eScore You Can't Know

August 20, 2012 Lauren Volpi

Just when you think you have a handle on your credit score, number of Facebook friends, LinkedIn connections, Twitter followers, and most recently your Klout score, there’s now an eScore to worry about. You probably have a pretty good idea of where you stand with each rating: I’m satisfied with my average standing in every category (378 LinkedIn connections, mid-50’s Klout score, median credit score, and I went rogue and quit Facebook in 2011). No such luck with your eScore, a digital combination of complex algorithms that calculates your buying power as a potential online customer, and is kept private.

In short, your eScore is made up of every online purchase you have ever made. My cumulative score would have a lot of information to pull from: vacation rentals on airbnb.com, garbage bag and skincare purchases on Amazon.com, impulsive furniture purchases from the taste-maker tag sale company One Kings Lane, dozens of restaurant reservations made on Opentable.com. I can already hazard a pretty good guess that I have a very high eScore, and am a desirable customer acquisition. It probably reads something like this: “Hey Apple, VRBO, Amazon.com, Nordstrom, Groupon, Zappos! Bet your money on Lauren Volpi because she loves to click ‘Add to Cart’ more than ‘Save for Later’.”

Even more interesting about the eScore database is how businesses acquire them. It’s similar to marketers purchasing a database of leads from a third-party vendor that charges a price for each lead based on an attached score. The higher the score, the more likely the lead is to generate revenue and make a return on investment. Want to know about your secret eScore and how it’s being used? Read more at The New York Times.

 

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