Computing a Profit-Maximizing Sequence of Offers to Agents in a Social Network
Firms have ever-increasing amounts of information about possible customers available to them; furthermore, they are increasingly able to push offers to them rather than having to passively wait for a consumer to initiate contact. This opens up enormous new opportunities for intelligent marketing. In this paper, we consider the limit case in which the firm can predict consumers’ preferences and relationships to each other perfectly, and has perfect control over when it makes offers to consumers. We focus on how to optimally introduce a new product into a social network of agents, when that product has significant externalities. We propose a general model to capture this problem, and prove that there is no polynomial-time approximation unless P=NP. However, in the special case where agents’ relationships are symmetric and externalities are positive, we show that the problem can be solved in polynomial time.
KeywordsMarketing Policy Utility Agent Positive Network Externality Challenging Optimization Problem Optimal Marketing Strategy
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.Ailon, N., Charikar, M., Newman, A.: Aggregating inconsistent information: ranking and clustering. In: STOC, pp. 684–693 (2005)Google Scholar
- 4.Babaei, M., Mirzasoleiman, B., Safari, M., Jalili, M.: Revenue maximization in social networks through discounting. Working Paper (2012)Google Scholar
- 6.Conitzer, V.: Computing Slater rankings using similarities among candidates. In: AAAI (2006)Google Scholar
- 7.Domingos, P., Richardson, M.: Mining the network value of customers. In: KDD, pp. 57–66 (2001)Google Scholar
- 8.Guruswami, V., Manokaran, R., Raghavendra, P.: Beating the random ordering is hard: Inapproximability of maximum acyclic subgraph. In: FOCS, pp. 573–582 (2008)Google Scholar
- 9.Haghpanah, N., Immorlica, N., Mirrokni, V.S., Munagala, K.: Optimal auctions with positive network externalities. In: ACM EC, pp. 11–20 (2011)Google Scholar
- 10.Hartline, J.D., Mirrokni, V.S., Sundararajan, M.: Optimal marketing strategies over social networks. In: WWW, pp. 189–198 (2008)Google Scholar
- 11.Kempe, D., Kleinberg, J.M., Tardos, É.: Maximizing the spread of influence through a social network. In: KDD, pp. 137–146 (2003)Google Scholar