May 31, 2002
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When personalization goes wrong.... If you've been to Amazon this week, and you're a registered shopper there, you've probably noticed their new merchandising feature "Gold Box Specials." A gold box sits at the top right of your screen taunting you to open it a la Pandora. When you do, it flashes a few different special offers-of-the-day at you, which you have 60 minutes to accept or forget forever. Minutes then tick down as you hang out on Amazon for the next hour.
Yes, I've already contacted Amazon's PR dept to line up an interview with a marketer there who can tell us if this works or not. In the meantime I tried it out myself, and was deeply disappointed because Amazon, a site famed for presenting personalized offers in every way possible, offered me a series of power tools.
The day I'll buy a cordless screwdriver is the day I'll buy a big wheel truck ( i.e. never, ever, ever). Given that I've been shopping on Amazon since the mid-90s, they should have known that.