Palm Beach WiFi

I’m sitting here at the Sam Snead tavern (sipping a coke) in the lovely West Palm Beach airport using their FREE WiFi to say hello. The more I travel, the more I appreciate places like this. Many airports now charge for WiFi, and while I don’t mind, it is nice to find an airport that recognizes the needs of their customers.

The trip has been a good one. I’ve met some more broadcasters and heard more stories about what’s going on “out there.” I’ve also seen a couple of interesting presentations, including one from a consultant who predicts that email marketing will thrive in the future. We’ll solve the spam thing, he believes, and permission marketing will become a lasting staple of Web commerce. The reason he thinks it’ll survive? Because it has to. Too much is at stake for it not to survive.

This is an interesting assumption to explore through the old game of “why/because.” You make a statement and then ask the question “Why?” This is followed by an answer that begins with “because” and ends with another question “Why?” The point is to reach conclusions or, more commonly, to find holes in your beliefs that become evident by chasing your tail. It’s a healthy exercise for those unafraid to challenge their own assumptions.

So what’s at stake if email marketing doesn’t survive? The collapse of all mass marketing. Think about it. Let’s assume we continue to move in a user-controlled direction. At some point, it logically follows that there won’t be any way for a single entity — government or otherwise — to get a message through to everybody at the same time. The one-to-many model is at stake.

Does it “have” to survive? Why? Because.

(Remember, “all or nothing” is an illusion.)

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