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Episode 45  |  39:23 min

Cognitive Marketing Series: Paradox of Choice

Episode 45  |  39:23 min  |  09.27.2021

Cognitive Marketing Series: Paradox of Choice

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This is a podcast episode titled, Cognitive Marketing Series: Paradox of Choice. The summary for this episode is: <p>In this episode of the Cognitive Marketing Series, hosts Bobby and Cole discuss the paradox of choice -- the fear of making the wrong choice, when there are too many options presented. They discuss why the paradox of choice happens and how it applies to marketers -- from developing a preference center to creating the "next best action" for their customers. </p><p><br></p><p><br></p>
Takeaway 1 | 01:00 MIN
😵 Analysis Paralysis
Takeaway 2 | 00:20 MIN
😕 Loss Aversion
Takeaway 3 | 01:31 MIN
🎯 Focus on One Thing or Many?
Takeaway 4 | 01:19 MIN
📧 Paradox of Choice and Preference Centers
Takeaway 5 | 01:02 MIN
👎 Less Satisfaction is a Sign of Paradox of Choice
Takeaway 6 | 01:13 MIN
⏭ Next Best Action and Paradox of Choice
Takeaway 7 | 01:09 MIN
💥 What You Can Do vs What You Should Do
Takeaway 8 | 00:52 MIN
🔁 Customer Lifecyle is Not Linear

In this episode of the Cognitive Marketing Series, hosts Bobby and Cole discuss the paradox of choice -- the fear of making the wrong choice, when there are too many options presented. They discuss why the paradox of choice happens and how it applies to marketers -- from developing a preference center to creating the "next best action" for their customers.

Speaker 1: Welcome to the In the Clouds Podcast. In the Clouds is a marketing cloud podcast powered by Lev, the most influential marketing focused Salesforce consultancy in the world. Lev is customer experience obsessed. And podcast hosts Bobby Tichy and Cole Fisher have partnered with some of the world's most well known brands to help them master meaningful, one on one connections with their customers. In this podcast, they'll combine strategy and deep technical expertise to share best practices, how- tos, and real life use cases and solutions for the world's top brands using Salesforce products today.

Bobby Tichy: So earlier today, we were talking about our top five sitcoms of all time.

Cole Fisher: Right.

Bobby Tichy: What was your top five again?

Cole Fisher: Well, I know what you're going to get at and why it's so difficult to do that. And this is for all time, so I think I had Seinfeld, The Office and Boy Meets World were all three locks. And if you're laughing at the last one, Boy Meets World, the writing holds up. It was really witty at the time, still, and exquisite character selection. So don't bash it until you try it, give it a shot. It's an old school one.

Bobby Tichy: Who was your favorite character from Boy Meets World?

Cole Fisher: So actually it changed as the seasons progressed. It started out as Shawn and Cory were this dynamic duo, and they were always funny. And then I think in the middle school years or so, Shawn got really dramatic, and Eric, Cory's brother, took over as the really funny one. So you just kind of had to roll with the punches. You don't ask questions. You just kind of go with the character development as it progresses. You know?

Bobby Tichy: Yeah. See, that's the way I like watching TV shows. Although, sometimes even with the character development, it gets a little, I don't know, a little out there. I think kind of along that same lines though, and the topic for today's podcast, which is continuing in the cognitive clouds, following up on the first episode, which was the law of least effort. And the title for today's podcast, the main subject is Paradox of Choice, which I have the same problem not only with TV shows. I look at Netflix and I have no idea. I could watch anything, and so that's very intimidating. But I do the same thing with food. If my wife and I are going to have food delivered, and I'll say, " What sounds good?" And she'll say, " I don't care. You pick." That's the worst thing I could possibly hear. And then I'll invariably pick sushi. And then she's like, " Really, sushi?"

Cole Fisher: Definitely. Yeah. No matter, that's the thing. You have unrestricted, this free agency to roam through any choices you can possibly imagine, but you're never satisfied with the selection once you make it. Netflix, food delivered from anywhere, the world at our fingertips, but now, the world's just too much.

Bobby Tichy: Why is that?

Cole Fisher: So that is a good segue. Nice job, by the way. So obviously, we're getting into the concept of paradox of choice in this episode today. So there's a few reasons why it happens. I'll kind of break it into four general concepts. The first is analysis paralysis, and that's kind of the more options you have, the higher the probability of your one single option, with given the assumption that there is one right choice, the more options you have, the better odds of you having the incorrect choice. So if I have two options, I've got a 50% chance of getting it right, right off the bat. But if I have 100 options, I have given that blanket statement of the assumption of one correct option, I have a 99% chance of getting it wrong. So well, kind of let's start with the more world famous case study. And anybody that's been in marketing classes or anything like that in the past 20 years has probably come up to this case study. And so what it was, this was about 20 years ago, this famous study was done, and it was in supermarkets. And what they did was they watched customers as they kind of pushed their carts past the end cap of an aisle, the end cap kind of being the prized real estate of where you want to capture attention for passers by. So initially in the control group, they had eight, or they had six different types of jelly. And they watched as this attracted about 40% of shoppers. And of those total, 30% converted. And so what they said was they said, " Okay. Now let's actually open this up to more different options of jam, more flavors." And so of all these jellies, they actually added 18, so they had 24 different flavors. Now if you have the original six, and you have 18 more, you can only assume that you have better options now. You have as good, if not better choices across the right, and thus the quality is actually improved. And so this is something that we'll touch on again later. But by all standards, we have better options here. What they noticed was instead of 40% of shoppers being attracted, now 60% of shoppers were attracted, so they saw a 50% increase in impressions, as we as marketers would call this. The big problem that they saw was instead of 30% converting, conversion being taking one of those, putting it in their cart, and checking out, they now only saw 3% conversion. So they saw a 50% increase in the impressions, but they saw a tenfold drop in the actual conversions. So the reason is, one of the big reasons is this analysis paralysis. There's so many options that instead of having... What basically happened here was, I, as the shopper, went from having about a 17% chance of choosing the correct flavor. So for me, I can probably easily dictate which, if there are five bad flavors for me, maybe I'm not a marmalade guy, I can write that off. I know I'm not standard grape. Let's just go through what I want. One out of six, not too much for me to navigate. But when we added 18 more flavors for 24 total flavors, now I have a 96% chance of choosing incorrectly. And inherently, the piece in me, or as a human being in my behavior that dictates this analysis paralysis is this loss aversion, which we touched on last time, but essentially, I'd rather make no decision than the wrong decision. And so I'll just kind of up in arms, walk away, and at least I'm not incorrect.

Bobby Tichy: Does this play into our last episode about the law of least effort at all, where I'm looking at all these flavors, and not only do I have a much higher chance of selecting the wrong one, but it's also just cognitive overload? I can't. It's too much effort to try to go through 24 different flavors to try to find the one that I might like.

Cole Fisher: It is. So two of the big kind of reasons it happens, so we'll talk a little bit, there's four main reasons about what's actually happening. But there's sort of two main reasons about why it's happening. That first one is that loss aversion. And that's that, I'm so afraid to lose that... There's a lot of studies, a lot of people will say it's a twofold, that we're twice as... And it's not really true, but there's some studies that suggest this, that we're approximately twice as uncomfortable losing something than we are gaining something. Sorry. So we're twice as uncomfortable losing something as we are encouraged by gaining something. Now nominally speaking, that's not really accurate, and it changes based on different scales and scenarios. But the general concept is loss aversion tells us that we're more afraid of losing than we are encouraged by gaining something. The other big component is, you're right, is cognitive load, or what a lot of people will call decision fatigue. So I remember this example from marketing classes way back in the day. There's a rule of seven. And so if you said, " Hey, think of... Here's 30 seconds," or a minute, or something like that. Think of as many brands of chips as you can, or fountain drinks, or something like that. Most people, they call it the rule of seven, plus or minus two, most people will generally fall within five to nine. And I'm talking well over the 90th percentile. A few people will get more or less than that, but most of the time we, and this is kind of that top of mind awareness concept that marketers are always in the battle ground against competitors for their industry top of mind for being a brand that consumers think of first because we have a very finite bandwidth to really hold these names and brands in place. And so the same is true when we're making just general decisions. So we mentioned yesterday, or sorry, not yesterday, but in the last episode, we kind of talked about the godfather of neoclassical economics and the concept of high versus low level processing. And one of the things that we talked about was how in terms of that ease of processing, these are concepts why Mark Zuckerberg was always wearing hoodies, or why Steve Jobs was always wearing the same mock turtleneck, because if we eliminate low level, mundane processing, in law of least effort, we save more bandwidth for higher level, more complex and strategic decision making. So this same thing happens with cognitive load, is there's so much decision here, and what I do instead of looking at all these 24 different jellies and the 96% chance that I'm going to choose incorrectly, I end up saying, " Okay. Is this worth all the time and effort for me to figure out what's the right one? Or is there so much here that I should just shut this down and walk away?" And again, no decision is better than the wrong decision. And so we're going to tend towards that via loss aversion and the cognitive load, saying, " No, these two factors are what's pushing me over the edge to just not making any decision whatsoever."

Bobby Tichy: Do you think it could be applied to marketers, or technologists, or really whoever? But it's the concept or the thought that it's much better to focus on a couple of things, especially what you're good at, rather than trying to... You want to go deep into a few topics or a few skills, rather than try to go really broad with them. And I think that there's a lot of argument on whether or not... Which one is best? And certainly, the line of work differs and that sort of thing. But I wonder if there's a correlation here too, where if you... Kind of to your point about Mark Zuckerberg and Steve Jobs wearing the same thing, or people who, I've heard Nick Saban, the head coach of Alabama, has the same thing for breakfast, lunch and dinner every single day. It's just less choice. Right? And so if I'm thinking about, well, I'm going to become an expert in Salesforce Marketing Cloud versus, I'm going to become an expert in every single Salesforce product, it's going to take a much longer time. And you're probably not as inclined to certain products under the Salesforce umbrella versus if you focused on one or two of them to really dive in on because then you're not having to... This may be a stretch, as I'm thinking about it more. But the thought of having a couple of things to really dig deep into, versus trying to understand everything a little bit.

Cole Fisher: Yeah. Well, so it's related in the fact of this kind of bandwidth approach. But yeah, there's most empirical evidence will show that human behavior itself suggests that we always benefit from focusing on our strengths and improving one or two things that we really have an innate passion and intrinsic drive towards, things like that, that we've identified that we're, A, already good at, and B, that we're motivated to perform at, whereas, those who put in... If you could spend 100 hours doing something, learning something, perfecting something, if you chose something that you're already strong at, the output will be better than something if I put 100 hours in something that I'm not good at. And I would not see as much of a payoff for my time. So yes, to your point, focusing on something that you're very good at, or something that you're inclined towards, you'll see more of a payoff for the amount of time that you actually expend the investment time than you would if something that you're average at, or something that you're just not as naturally talented at. Typically, we're going to see far lower return on time like that.

Bobby Tichy: Which, from what you were saying really kind of plays into... And that's what I love about all this stuff is it kind of all intertwines together, is it ties into the law of least effort. Right? I could, for example, learn an additional product under something that I already know and pick it up much quicker than if I'm picking up a brand new product. The value of that is going to be much higher because not only because it's specific to that skill that I have, but it's also going to take much less time.

Cole Fisher: Exactly. And that's another thing too, as a customer when we're interpreting messages from marketers, we have that same tendency to say, " Okay. I need to bucket this within a couple of things," as opposed to those certain brands that they just do so much, that we as a customer, we have a hard time really encapsulating everything that brand really does. And so you've always found a brand that you've... I knew brand X as this CPG company, or really leading in this certain space. And then I find out there's 12 other things they also do. The reason we're surprised by that a lot of times as consumers is because we, A, don't have the end to end explanation of what they do. But B, we need to, for our own simplicity's sake, hang a hat and say, " This is what they do." This is what I understand, and I don't need to invest more time, consideration, or cognitive effort into understanding that. And so a lot of times as marketers when we say, " Our product does this. It's able to do that, X, Y, and Z. We have all these other products," we do convolute that message to consumers, and therefore, we get less return on our marketing messaging just from that general concept alone.

Bobby Tichy: Well, I think as we think about the practical side of this with marketers and technology, there's two examples or concepts that really stand out to me. One is preference centers. There's a lot of different preference centers out there. And I think that again, kind of combining the concepts of law of least effort and paradox of choice, I typically am not going to go to a preference center unless I am a huge fan of that brand. And I'm going to take the time to actually think about what different messages I'm getting from them, and I either really like some of their messaging, and am curious about what else they have, or I don't like certain parts of their messaging, so I'm going to unsubscribe from those. But I want to keep some of the other ones. But the common I think misconception or discussion about preference centers specifically is you probably really shouldn't be investing a whole lot of time in a preference center if your unsubscribe rate is low. So if it's less than 1.5%, don't even think about it. Just put something out there, make sure it's CAN- SPAM compliant. Don't spend too much time or effort in designing something or trying to manage these different types of newsletters that may or may not be providing value. If your unsubscribe rate is low, most likely, your audience is really happy with your content. Right? So it doesn't make a whole lot of time to... Or it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to spend diving into it. However, if you're going to, then don't have 300 different options of the different campaigns that you could provide someone. And there are some brands in some sectors that there are certain caveats to it, for sure. But for example, when I subscribed to Dick's Sporting Goods, I don't want to go to their preference center and see all these different options of: Are you interested in our weekly emails? Are you interested in sales emails? Are you interested in new drops? And if you are interested in new drops, what brands are you interested in? There's just so many different choices that I then have to make, that I just end up abandoning the entire process.

Cole Fisher: Yeah. And the funny thing is, abandonment is one thing. As marketers, that's all we look at, or that's the thing that is most endemic to the problem. The thing that's the biggest indicator is, oh, we've got all these impressions. And think about it too, I mean think about the end cap of jellies and four times as many options now, and 50% more impressions with tenfold drop in conversions. That becomes very costly to marketers. But the other things that actually happen are not just this analysis paralysis and loss averse decision to just make no decision, but so we see lower conversions. And that's just the general concept that more is not always better. But conversions aren't necessarily just purchases. It's just general satisfaction, ratings, reviews, things like that is where we also see this come to fruition. But we as marketers don't connect the two end to end all the time. So less satisfaction is another basically a telltale sign that paradox of choice is occurring. And so what's occurring is the end user is saying, " Well, here's the aggregate opportunity cost." Not only do I have 23 different flavors of jelly that are wrong for me, but that's 23 different flavors that I can't try, I don't understand, I don't know. That makes me uneasy. But now I also have to say, " The more time I've spent on this," and this is with most decisions, human beings will respond this way. The more time and expenditure of energy that I have invested in this decision, the increased expectations I have for the result of my decision. So I except higher ROI because I've spent more time, cognitive load, effort on this decision. And you basically, you raise the bar without actually having raised any product. You didn't improve the product. You just improved... You just convoluted the process, and now we have a raised bar for the expectation. And so what happens is, we discussed cognitive dissonance in the last episode, and there's a component to that called counterfactual thinking. And what counterfactual thinking is, kind of examining not what you did, but what you didn't do. And so upward counterfactual thinking in this regard is that what if effect. That's saying that I could've had all these other decisions. I could've had this one. I could've had this alternate product, something like that. And one of the funny things that's really counterintuitive to us as marketers is the concept of a return, or some sort of money back guarantee, or some sort of out that allows us as a consumer to quote, unquote, feel better about our decision. But what most studies will show is that people that have that out are less satisfied with their decision. And there've been numerous studies like this done. But they'll have product A, and they'll expose it to the control group and say, " Go through the process. Check out. How was your experience with product A?" They'll have the exact same thing with product A in an experiment group. And they'll say, " Throughout this process, if you don't like it, you can have your money back." What they'll find is they may have no difference in the actual return rate, but those that actually have the option to return it have a lower satisfaction than those that didn't.

Bobby Tichy: Oh, that's interesting.

Cole Fisher: Yeah, it's very counterintuitive. We wouldn't imagine that happens, but what's occurring is that upward counterfactual thinking. It's like, " Well, what if I could?" So I'm still applying effort. I'm still applying that expenditure of time and energy after the conversion, whereas the conversion now is not absolute for me, so I'm still weighing in. Is this working? Should I return it? Is it okay? Should I not have made this decision at all? And now that tends to weigh on us more than if this was just an absolute conversion and it's done, and we can be satisfied with it.

Bobby Tichy: The other thing that I think about along the same lines, because I think that one thing you mentioned earlier kind of comes to the thought of, the more time you spend on something, the more invested you are in it, the more you think the return should be higher. And I think another practical example of this for marketers and technology is whether it's product, or content, or web personalization, trying to figure out what the next best action is, or the next best step is, for that particular consumer. And one reason why I do like and next best action, specifically when we're thinking about consumer related products, is it's based on my history, not only what I've looked at, but what I've purchased, and giving me recommendations based off of that, which makes it very easy to say, " If there's three options at the top, I can say,'Oh, those are great, or I like that one, or I'm not interested." I just keep going on, but it's at least providing me something that I didn't have to do any work for, which is something I really like. What I don't like, and this is kind of along the same lines of paradox of choice, is when I'm given too many options. Right? It's just like the jelly. If I get an email from a shoe brand that has 18 different pairs of shoes in it that I might like, it's too much. It's content overload. So it's really interesting to think about the different types of content recommendations or product recommendations and how AI is being used to hopefully do a better job of providing that choice.

Cole Fisher: Yeah, for sure. And I love the consummate feedback loop that we as marketers, or at least we hope or imply that we should be doing. But this is one of those things, especially to your point, content and product recommendations, where we always encourage marketers to say, " There's a fine line between what you can be doing versus what you should be doing." And a lot of the times, this is one of the biggest errors that we see in product and content recommendations. And people, we get involved in AI and ML, and we love the recommendation engine, and we love that automated, hands off approach to providing a less, a more frictionless checkout, and an easier customer experience, and leveraging propensities and affinities to really dial in on something great. And a lot of times, brands are doing really well at it. But a lot of the times, we get ahold of something that we can do, and we don't ask ourselves, " Should we be doing this?" And that's the big example, the glaring example for me is the number of recs, product recommendations throughout the process. The goal is to make a frictionless conversion process. And what you're actually doing a lot of the times is the marketer is operating on this assumption that the customer life cycle is linear, which anything we inherently do know, it's that it's not linear. And people can dodge from one stage to another. And we try to put this linear progression of customer lifecycle, like we would see in a textbook, and we try to kind of project that onto our customers. This would be at least an ideal process. And most of the time, it's relatively close. But what we know is customers go in and out. They drop in at any point, and they can drop out at any point. And what we're doing is, if I'm a marketer supplying dozens and dozens of recs throughout the process, and I'm getting close to the checkout process, instead of just kind of zipping my lip and letting the customer actually check out, I'm getting them to the point of almost converting and saying, " Hey, did you think about this? Or did you think about these add on products, or this alternative product, or this unrelated product?" Or things like that, where there's just so much going on at once that what I'm actually doing is reminding the customer how much more work can be done to research their actual purchase. So I'm just reminding them of how much more options there are, how many more different choices they could or should exercise in this, and how uneducated they are on this actual product or space that they're entering into. And so of course, we wonder why. I remember seeing these stats. And we've heard, they've changed a couple here and there over the years. But more than 90% of customers are abandoning their cart. And we as marketers say, " What's wrong here? Why are these customers so irrational?" Well, what are we doing them that's making them act this way? What are we doing that's making them act irrationally that is our actual irrationality? A lot of the times, it's that. It's that glaring example of there are just too many recommendations, too much stimuli going on at once, and we're scaring them off.

Bobby Tichy: Two things I wanted to make sure I mentioned, first is when you talk about that consumer lifecycle, or the customer lifecycle, and how so many of us think about it as a linear progression, which as you mentioned, it's absolutely not. And I think there's one client that we have that does a really nice job of testing everything. So they'll test their own data science recommendations and propensity modeling. And then they'll test Salesforce's AI and their propensity modeling, and some of the Einstein capabilities that they have. And they'll compare them. It's that phrase we always talk about of marketing is never done. It's just a constant iteration to figure out what works, what doesn't. Where is someone at? Because all we're doing is we're just trying to guess what is going to be that next best action. It's impossible to predict it. And the other piece of that too is if you cannot report on those different elements, then it makes it really hard to show the value of these things. And that's what we really try to figure out. Or what are the key KPIs, or the ROI metrics that we're going to follow as we're going through these different campaigns, or these different strategies to make sure that we can look back at it and say, " Okay, Einstein had a 12% conversion rate. But our data science team had a 16% conversion rate." Is that enough for us to put more eggs into our own basket, or do we continue down that path, and so on and so forth? The other piece that you mentioned about when there are all these different steps, or popups, or things as you're going throughout that process, I was just thinking about this the other day. I am a very easy to please pizza eater, and I love Domino's pizza, so feel free to make fun of me for loving Domino's pizza. But the thing that I dislike about Domino's pizza is that as soon as I add something to my cart, so I go to... I'm going to get a crunchy thin crust with pepperoni, green pepper, and onion, and then I add it to my cart. And the first thing it does is it pops up and says, " Would you like to add extra cheese?" And I already went through the process of what I wanted, and then it's telling me exactly what you said, and that's how I take it. Do you want to add extra cheese? No, I don't want to add extra cheese. If I did, I would've already put it in there. And so it's just one more button for me to X out of. And then-

Cole Fisher: But thank you for the reminder of what I don't actually have.

Bobby Tichy: Yeah, exactly. Exactly. And then I go to the checkout, and I click the checkout button. And then three recommendations come up for breadsticks, dessert, or drinks. And it's the same thing. And to me, especially when I'm in a hurry, it's just so many more things for me to go through. And I'm sure there's a better way of doing it outside of the pop up. Right? You could have it at where the button is. So when I go to click the checkout at the button, there's just a banner across the screen there. But I think the problem is that popups typically perform so well. The conversion rate on popups, whether it's for email opt in, or adding something additional to your cart, with an additional recommendation, historically, they perform extremely well. But what's the value that you're providing out of that? And I think that's the moral of the story here. If you're going to add more choices, if you're going to provide a consumer or a contact with additional elements, what's the value that you're providing? Is it, to your point, Cole, telling them what they're missing out on? Or is it something that could actually make their experience better?

Cole Fisher: Yeah. The conversion, I mean, it's fishing with dynamite. Conversions are so high on these popups that you're basically saying, " Hey, I'm going to steal away from the experience you're having with one superseding message that's of the utmost importance." Is it really that important? Is there value being added by it? What is the customer receiving out of this? Is this the most important thing? Yeah, they're going to get some sort of reaction out of it. But yeah, a lot of the times, it's robbing the rest of the choices and the rest of that experience, it better be super important to us.

Bobby Tichy: Well, thanks for going through this. This is really fun to go through. I'm excited for us to keep going through them. And I think to the earlier point around just that linear progression of the contact lifecycle, as we think about tools like Journey Builder, and how you can build out that linear progression, I'm anxious. We're going to do a podcast here in the coming weeks around the future of martech as well, kind of what our predictions are for things like that, especially as they relate to the progression of the customer lifecycle and all those elements too, so that'll be great to dive into, as well as additional topics on the cognitive clouds. So shifting to completely unrelated, thinking about the favorites, your favorite sitcoms. Do you have an all time favorite sitcom character?

Cole Fisher: Ooh, that's a tough one. I feel like you already have one teed up.

Bobby Tichy: I really don't because I think it's just... Anytime someone asks you, " What's your favorite this?" I always think of five or 10 things. It's really hard to kind of narrow it down to one. I would immediately think of Kramer and George from Seinfeld. I would immediately think of Lucille Bluth from Arrested Development.

Cole Fisher: I feel like if I do go with those types of... They're usually not... Yeah, I think to your point, they're not main characters. They're off the beaten path a little bit.

Bobby Tichy: Yeah.

Cole Fisher: There's some sort of oddity to them that makes them that nostalgic. I was going to say Kramer's one of the ones that stands out to me as well. And it's not because you can necessarily relate to him, not because there's some inherent qualities that are so admired, it's just because he's so weird and funny and quirky. It's something like that, that makes it so odd, that it stands out.

Bobby Tichy: It's almost like the character actors, where it's hard for them to break out of that. You could never see Michael Richards in anything else and not think of Kramer. Same thing with Jason Alexander and George Costanza.

Cole Fisher: Yeah, they're almost typecast because it was such a good fit.

Bobby Tichy: Yeah, which is really cool and really sad at the same time. It stinks that Jason Alexander hasn't really had a whole, as big of a role as he had in Seinfeld since Seinfeld. But at the same time, he doesn't because he had so much success on Seinfeld, so it's kind of this weird dichotomy. But a couple other ones I think of are Sam Malone from Cheers, basically every character in Golden Girls.

Cole Fisher: I knew you were going to say Golden Girls.

Bobby Tichy: I'm trying to think of something that's more recent, so that way we don't totally sound like we only watch TV from the'80s and'90s. Well, I was going to say Boy Meets World, but that's not... I mean, that was still late'90s, early 2000s.

Cole Fisher: Yeah, that's still not recent.

Bobby Tichy: Oh, golly.

Cole Fisher: They did a good job. I'll tell you, they did a good job on characters. I would say something like, I wouldn't necessarily put him in my top, but in The Office, Kevin Malone has probably the highest ratio of funny lines to actual overall lines. Most of the things he says are just like one off in the background, but they're funny, and they're very fitting to just his character. There's usually a fat or a dumb joke in there for him. But he doesn't have much of a front row presence in most of that cast. So those types of characters, where it's like that oddity, kind of doesn't really... Somebody that you wouldn't make a main dish, but still is a great complement to the rest of the show.

Bobby Tichy: Was Kevin the one that spilled the chili?

Cole Fisher: Yes.

Bobby Tichy: Okay, yeah. That episode was great. The only person I can think of that was within the last 10 years would be Ron Swanson from Parks and Rec.

Cole Fisher: Yeah. That's a great character.

Bobby Tichy: He's just... Yeah, it's kind of like the George Costanza, the reason I love George Costanza is because he's so angry and miserable all the time. And it's kind of that way with Ron Swanson. He's just, there's no development of Ron Swanson. Right? It's just this is the character and that's who he is for the run of the show.

Cole Fisher: Yeah. And every line, or every reaction from him is expected, but it's exquisitely accurate to what he is.

Bobby Tichy: Yeah, that's so true. You kind of have an idea of what he's going to say, and yet every time, the delivery is great. It's still hilarious. Well, anyway, thanks everybody for listening, really appreciate it. As always, you can reach out to us at intheclouds @ levdigital. com If you've got a topic or a guest that you think we'd love talking to, feel free to let us know. And we'll catch you next time.

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