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“MICROTARGETING IS A REMARKABLE THING. Even casual podcast listeners, particularly those between the ages of twenty-five and forty-five, can recite with minimal prompting the key design features of a CasperTM mattress. And it’s not just CasperTM—there are plenty of competitors with nearly as aggressive advertising campaigns: Leesa, BedInaBox, Lull, Nest, CloudSleep, Yogabed, Avocado, GhostBed, and more. Only one of these is made up.
Why do so many business and marketing types believe that the model podcast listener—a young, hip thirtysomething who needs a new fix since NPR went down the shitter—is clay waiting to be molded into a mattress buyer? On the surface it makes no sense. This demographic traditionally wants to make purchases that have, bluntly, some show-off value. This is the upwardly mobile, striving, status-seeking social climber. Not too long ago these people were pitched BMWs, Rolexes, and exotic vacations. The kind of stuff that tells the world you’ve Arrived.
How did that segment of the market become a combat zone for, of all things, mattress retail? Well, if you listen to a lot of podcasts, marketing data suggests you stand at the confluence of two powerful trends: high anxiety and lowered expectations.”
JJ Editor's Daily Picks
"THE CAPTURE of the last territory controlled by the Islamic State on Saturday was far from a final victory over the movement, as U.S. commanders and diplomats were careful to emphasize."
"How a Gay Teen, an Internet Nazi, and a Late-Night Rendezvous Turned to Tragedy. When self-loathing meets the new age of online extremism."
"Benjamin Netanyahu ignored the intelligence operations of Beijing and Moscow for too long. Now, the Israeli government is finally paying attention, but it could be too late."
"Former Nick Jr. kids are now reckoning with this all-grown-up intrepid explorer, whose obstacles are a lot bigger than Swiper the Fox. And that is a hard pill to swallow."
"At the end of last week, the three-month Treasury bills' yield rose above the yield for 10-year Treasuries for the first time since 2007, prompting warnings that the U.S. is headed for recession later this year or in early 2020."
"A team of researchers from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and Technion-Israel Institute of Technology attempted to answer some questions about voting with the help of artificial intelligence (AI)."
"The experts I spoke with all said that the internet had changed the way conspiracies spread, but conspiracies, both dangerous and petty, have always been with us."
"Pop culture today is obsessed with the battle between good and evil. Traditional folktales never were. What changed?"
"Trustful parents allow their children as much freedom as reasonably possible to make their own decisions. They trust their children’s instincts, judgments, and ability to learn from mistakes."
"Arugulagate. In 2007, Barack Obama was in Iowa, speaking as a presidential hopeful to a group of farmers who were worried about the stagnation of their crop prices while America’s grocery bills continued to rise."
"To say that information exists in and of itself is akin to speaking of spin without the top, of ripples without water, of a dance without the dancer, or of the Cheshire Cat’s grin without the cat."
"Ted Cruz replaces the Democrats’ muddled manifesto with a clear and unequivocal exploration of the hatred of Jews and its particular evils."