Make Marketing History

The views of a marketing deviant.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Geeks And Girls.

An article in yesterday's Financial Times by Meg Carter explained how Vodafone Australia are designing computer-generated agents to sound more life-like, so that a "human" touch can replace the hated push-button menus faced by so many customers in their dealings with call centres.

I suppose it might be marginally less irritating and a move in the right direction. But the automation of any aspect of customer service always smacks of false economy to me and a failure to know your user. It's a suspicion that was not alleviated by the following exhortation of the human-ness of the Lara character being used and how she reflects Vodafone Australia's brand values,

"She's 26, single, lives in Sydney, has a belly button (my italics) and drives a VW Beetle."

Further evidence that geeks and female anatomy are relative strangers.

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