Chapter 6The Expanded Power of Context: M.A.D.E.s

A contextual ad is not only relevant in its content, it has temporal relevance, location relevance, and relevance in all other contextual dimensions. Therefore a contextual ad must reach the consumer at the right time, at the right place, through the right people (e.g., people he or she trusts). It will be much more effective. Advertisers won't need to be so intrusive, and ads don't have to be an annoyance. In fact, if an ad can be context sensitive, it may even become something desirable.

— Michael Wu, Chief Scientist, Lithium Technologies (2012)

In life, we know that timing is everything. Suggest something to someone or to a group of people at the wrong time or in the wrong place and the consequences are not only bad at the moment, but likely bad for the foreseeable future. We've wasted their time and we've wasted our own time, even if what we had to say might have been perfectly valid. We may never get a second chance if we are woefully off. Conversely, looking for, being ready for, and/or creating just the right setting and surroundings, when the person is in the right frame of mind and emotional state, increases the likelihood of positive outcomes for all. Done consistently, thoughtfully, over time, in subsequent circumstances and situations, the positive connection, appreciation, and trust can be lasting. Such is the power of context.

By 2020, brands will be held to the same standards as people, and they will have the wherewithal ...

Get Beyond Advertising now with O’Reilly online learning.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from 200+ publishers.