I’ve just done it guys, I named my new post after Taylor Swift’s song lyrics. Still happy though, it could have ended up much worse. For example, naming my dog Swift or kid Taylor. There is literally zero guarantee in this world besides one – weirdness and beauty of the Magicookie blog, so here’s to hoping you all enjoy this new article written in the name of love.
Love is the primary essence of our lives and the only logical reason behind the whole romantic movie & book category. In theory, love is everything and the theory of everything is Love. Me, you, Stephen Hawking — we all can somehow relate to that. But the question remains, what the definition of love really is? Let’s jump over all the sweet definitions offered by poets and go directly into a more scientific explanation of love. Magicookie is aiming to be a scientific blog, after all!
Scientists tend to define love as a “human chemical reaction” which lights up a whole bunch of hormones playing all around together in a specular harmony. According to Dr. Helen Fisher at Rutgers (1), romantic love can be broken down into three categories: lust, attraction, attachment. Each category is characterized by its own set of hormones stemming from the brain as explained by the pic below.
So now we know the basic ingredients to prepare a romantic dinner with a lot of love served for two. Now imagine, the second person at your table isn’t a person but your phone, sitting there quietly and offering you some immediate dopamine ready to be released before your starter arrives (hi bro you want some good shit?)… Let’s be honest here, what is the probability of you checking your phone during a dinner with your partner or friends anyway? Most of us, being proper addicts, check out what our favorite dealer has to offer. In fact, dopamine is particularly a well-explored hormone while speaking about addiction. Did you know pretty much the same regions light up when you are doing cocaine as do the one’s when you are receiving likes from your friends? The whole ‘thing’, thing being our attachment to the digital world, then looks like a modern technology-based threesome: you, your life & Mark Zuckerberg in various forms.
To make this threesome unforgettable, a pinch of a secret essence called personalization is needed. In 1999, Bill Gates stated that “Content is the King”. I bet that today – almost 20 years later he would add that Personalized Content is the King. So, ladies and gentlemen the King is dead. Long live the king! Personalization as such is truly a new boss in da house and every marketer out there should pay their ultimate respect to it (just imagine the classy godfather cover with your phone and weirdly looking mustache plus a cat – pointless but lovely idea). Speaking of love again, personalization is more than everything based on the basic premises of LOVE – tadá we are closing the magic circle.
One of the most important love principles was described by Elizabeth Currie (2) through the Lock-n-key model that says that individuals experience euphoria if they collide with someone who can provide a key which they look for “if you have money as a key, you will have a ‘chemical reaction’ to potential mates with money”. There are three main points here. First, you might be a gold-digger if this is the case for you. Second, you should get an “Only a god can judge me tattoo” to deal with the first point. And most importantly, third, your level of dopamine level might as well increased if you find a match. As it turns out, it might be match of a relevant FB post, product, movie, mate. This is well supported by the research findings that claims, that users who spend on average more than 10 minutes on Facebook might experience a hormonal spike of the level of oxytocin by 13% (similar as people usually do experience for example during a wedding). As a result, the typical social media/facebook users tends to trust other people on the internet by 43% more than regular internet user.
Social Media is the best example of how powerful personalization is. As Zuck said while being questioned by the US House of Justice after Cambridge Analytica scandals, what people hate more than ads are irrelevant ads. He is correct, and very well aware that users’ and shareholders’ happiness equals to the level of personalization (precise targeting) they can offer that can, of course, have some negative effects like socioeconomics fuckups of changing the political directions of whole nations. The interesting fact is, that this doesn’t happen only thanks to creating and feeding social bubbles – clusters of the like-minded people, but once again, thanks to the already mentioned hormone oxytocin and its impact on our perception.
All the personalization happening online is like a never-ending race between better machine learning algorithms which final results are determined by their own quality and quality of the data they work with – so our digital identities. Even as precise as things already are, I still believe that we have only seen the tip of the iceberg and the real, true personalization is still yet to come.
The thing is: personalization shouldn’t be about you, it should be you and we’ll speak about it within the second part of It’s a love story, baby just say yes… If you actually made it here and read the whole thing or just randomly scrolled down (yes I can see you!), you will get some reward 🙂 So here we go, listen and enjoy! Ouch, one more thing. If you also want to make the reptile part of my brain happy, like comment or share this article and wait impatiently for the second part.