Amazon WTF?

Uh, you guys may want to tweak that algorithm a bit . . .


Hmmmm, so you think that buying a disposable $39 tool kit is best accessorized by a $2000 $1,299.88 Samsung HP-S4253 42" Plasma HDTV?  Nice !

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What's been said:

Discussions found on the web:
  1. squik commented on Apr 14

    Maybe the Plasma HDTV is really poor quality and the toolkit is a good accessory for the TV.

  2. Lauriston commented on Apr 14

    What’s wrong with watching TV while you fix broken stuff around the house? You can even place one of those HDTV screens in your garage wall, using the tool set and ladder for that job of course ;)

  3. SINGER commented on Apr 14

    only connection b/w the two is that they are both on EARTH…other than that HMMMMMMMMMMMM…

  4. Tanta commented on Apr 14

    I know! I know! It’s because if you’re buying a “home maintenance” tool kit, you must have taken out a HELOC, and if you are withdrawing mortgage equity, that means that 50% has to go to consumption, and surely your HELOC limit can handle a plasma TV.

    Maybe you could lay that one on Luskin: who needs Goldman Sachs as evidence when we have Amazon?

  5. Louis commented on Apr 14

    Barry, It’s reverse recommendationology:
    If you buy a plasma you would use the toolkit to install the $600 brackets you need for it.
    Therefore, buying the plasma TV increases the value of the toolkit and is thus an accessory.

  6. scorpio commented on Apr 14

    let me get that for ya

  7. David commented on Apr 14

    I believe Singer is closer to the truth. The algorithm is actually correct. Amazon figures you paid too much for the tool kit so you must have a lot of free cash flow or you are an impulse buyer. Therefore, you are a buyer that actually might purchase this TV along with the tool kit. Now the truth Barry…did you click on one of the TV recommendations just to check one of them out?

  8. John Hargreaves commented on Apr 14

    I bought a plasma TV set and they recommended that I buy a $39 tool repair kit.

  9. Sponge Todd Square Pants commented on Apr 15

    I think it is kind of similar to the “Would you like fries with that?” suggestive marketing strategy McDonalds developed. A plasma tv is a perfect complement to almost any purchase.

  10. Eric commented on Apr 15

    It must be a subtle problem to target ads successfully in a mass-algorithmic manner, and I bet lazy (read cheap) ad-hoc solutions abound. It certainly looks that way!

  11. Jim Bergsten commented on Apr 15

    There’s nothing in a TV set (plasma or otherwise) that can’t be fixed with a hammer.

    Especially what it displays.

  12. mdcphilly commented on Apr 15

    This algorithm match had way more to do with the number of folks buying Plasma TVs (everyone) than it did with the algorithm’s flaws.

  13. rob commented on Apr 15

    everyone knows the best accessory for a toolkit is a jet ski

  14. Ross commented on Apr 15

    Amazon needs to begin using the user friendly Al Gore ythms. Buy the tool set and up pops an anti global warming kit complete with instructions and a merit badge.

  15. V L commented on Apr 15

    One reason for this recommendation could be because “Home Maintenance Tool Set” contains a word “Home”; therefore, Amazon computer “thinks” that you are buying something for your home and might also be interested in relatively inexpensive plasma TV (profitable for Amazon high ticket item). Another reason could be that Amazon is desperate and needs to reduce inventory.

  16. Rob Dawg commented on Apr 15

    A plasma TV tuned 24/7 to CNBC would provide no end of inspiration as to exactly where to stick some of your new tools.

  17. wally commented on Apr 15

    Well, we see why you are writing a blog instead of running a vast retail operation.

  18. sam commented on Apr 15

    i bought that TV @998 during black friday…great inflation dude!

  19. anon commented on Apr 16

    At least the suggestion is easily ignored on the web. My wife has ended-up on a marketing list (request for removal “in process”) that has given us the following snail-mail:
    -field and stream magazine (miss)
    -dc comics (miss)
    -playstation hints magazine (miss)
    -coastal living (miss since geared toward seniors, but we do like to skim)
    -car and driver (miss)
    -some electronics catalog (miss)
    -assorted household goods catalogs of varying purpose and style (mostly tacky, misses all)
    -some baby magazine (hit! though it goes straight to the recycling bucket)

    I suspect they’re waiting for the “hit” to come back to narrow the focus. Perhaps Amazon uses a similar algorithm.

  20. John F. commented on Apr 16

    Maybe Jeff Spicoli works for Amazon now:
    “My old man is a television repairman, he’s got this ultimate set of tools. I can fix it.”

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