Values tie together behaviors across a wide array of domains and circumstances, such that understanding a person’s value driven behavior requires an equally wide array of values markers. Further, once you understand that behavior, the opportunities for value based decision making are similarly vast. Zenzi’s ValueBase service leverage our proprietary database to uniquely understand the modern consumer.

We have all had the experience of shopping for something on the internet and seeing ads for that same product on an unrelated website. This practice, called re-targeting, is one of the more successful uses of “big data”, born out of an entire eco-system of advertising machine learning algorithms that all attempt to optimize the ads that are served to potential customers. However, while this use of data may lead to a marginal increase in profits, it seems a bit too obvious and “on the nose” for it to be the ultimate application of big data. The technical term for this phenomenon is “overfitting”, which is what occurs when data gets too specific.

A broader view of the consumer treats the individual, not as a collection of immediate needs, but rather as someone with stable motivations, drives, and goals, which are all indicative of a person’s values. In the modern world, where food and safety are often taken for granted, these values drive an increasing amount of consumer behavior.

Understanding these values requires getting beyond the specifics of an individual data point and understanding the broader pattern of a person’s behavior. It requires knowing that there is a connection between the kinds of gadgets a person buys, the neighborhood they choose to live in, the stories they read/watch, and the music they listen to. ValueBase, Zenzi’s database of empirical values related findings, allows us to draw connections between these domains, in ways that are not possible with narrower, domain specific databases. Leveraging data sources such as Facebook, Ranker, Twitter, as well as academic databases such as and, which all contribute to Valuebase, allows us to draw connections between wide arrays of behaviors, from dining to music to shopping to choices of whom to love and where to live. It is from these connections that one can take a specific behavior, such as buying a particular laptop, and generalize it to a desire to own cutting edge technology or to own something that simply works.

These connections not only allow us to understand a person’s values, but also to predict how to reach that person on a more meaningful level. Rather than simply trying to fill an immediate need, which may have already been satisfied, ValueBase allows us to consider broader goals that may be applicable to very specific domains. For example, knowing that a person enjoys stories with happy endings and stores with plenty of parking can enable us to understand where they are more likely to live and what social media they are likely to consume. In this way, ValueBase allows us to draw broader correlations across domains, using values to link these behaviors.

If you are interested in seeing how ValueBase can be used to both understand your customers and identify opportunities for reaching them at a deeper level, please do contact us as we are eager to help companies and consumers connect at a deeper, less transactional and more intrinsically motivated level.