My WIRED Cover

Wired CoverAbout three months ago, I ripped the shrink wrap off my monthly WIRED magazine and found a note from the publisher. They were doing a special run in partnership with XEROX around a piece on hyper-personalization on the web. If I was one of the first 5,000, the note said, to send in a picture of myself at the appropriate resolution, I'd get my face on the cover of the magazine. Of course, I've always wanted to see my face on the cover of WIRED magazine.

So, I shot off the first pic that came up -- a scruffy-looking, vacationing Pete shot through a mirror in a get-away hacienda in New Mexico this year. Very vacation-chiq. Still, my face, my WIRED.

I think it's a befitting example of the kind of personalization we're capable of now, that even a publication the size of WIRED can reach out and touch us readers so personally, and it's something all small businesses can take a note on: how many of us have 5,000 individual clients in our rosters? How long would it take to reach out and touch them each so personally?