Data mining at Target:
Lots of people buy lotion, but one of Pole’s colleagues noticed that women on the baby registry were buying larger quantities of unscented lotion around the beginning of their second trimester. Another analyst noted that sometime in the first 20 weeks, pregnant women loaded up on supplements like calcium, magnesium and zinc.
With that knowledge, they can detect pregnant customers, and send them targeted mails. But then one father called, complaining that his daughter received baby-mailings … turns out Target beat him to learning his daughter was pregnant.