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We need to fix the broken model of geolocation data

After its release in 1982, it took 35 years for a Blade Runner sequel to hit screens.

The original flopped on release, only to be adopted as a cult movie, and it looks like that might have to happen again. Four weeks after it was released, the US box office for Blade Runner 2049 has topped at $82m, just over half of its $150m budget.

In Hollywood terms the film is officially a flop and it also bombed in China. What may also be considered a failure is one of the motifs of the original film; namely the notion and culture that personalised advertising can be pushed to people in the location they find themselves. While the promise of verified and geolocation data hasn't been with us as long as the 35 years it took for a Blade Runner follow-up, it certainly feels as if it has.

Nothing, apparently, has changed. A survey last month by Carto and Hanover Research found that 42% of businesses still rely on traditional BI tools to analyse location data.

The report emphasised that location data can be analysed to completely transform the way marketers understand and target their customers. Unfortunately, many marketers are under-utilising their location data and are not bringing in the right geographic and socio-economic context or tools to reach its full potential.


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