if you are the product becasue someone else is paying, what do you call the others who you are buying a meal for?


Looking back at my powerpoint I know that I have widely used the phrase “we are the product” for many years and like many I am not sure where it came from, where I first heard it or in what context, but it hits home about a truth; customers tends to refer to the one paying!

I am never sure what we should call the others at the table when we are enjoying a meal which I am paying for, however, Jonathan Zittan posted about the quote “When something online is free, you’re not the customer, you’re the product.” which Kevin Marks did some more digging on here and the conclusion is that its source is unclear, but the TV (advertising/ marketing) world has understood the implications of who is paying for the longest time.

As technology companies and engineers discovers loyalty, intention, attention, reputation, influence, desire, behavioural economics, and indeed an industry called Marketing and Advertising and that same industry sees tech companies have the data they always wanted, we are on new fertile ground for new discoveries about we behave and what we can do with this insight (please no privacy comments).  Hence my specific interest in digital footprints as they will describe us, if we like it or not and quite irrespective if we are a person, product, customer, user, individual, influencer, brand or hermit.