Bridging Recommendation and Marketing via Recurrent Intensity ModelingDownload PDF

Published: 28 Jan 2022, Last Modified: 13 Feb 2023ICLR 2022 PosterReaders: Everyone
Keywords: Recommender systems, marketing, push notifications, temporal point processes, sequence models
Abstract: This paper studies some under-explored connections between personalized recommendation and marketing systems. Obviously, these two systems are different, in two main ways. Firstly, personalized item-recommendation (ItemRec) is user-centric, whereas marketing recommends the best user-state segments (UserRec) on behalf of its item providers. (We treat different temporal states of the same user as separate marketing opportunities.) To overcome this difference, we realize a novel connection to Marked-Temporal Point Processes (MTPPs), where we view both problems as different projections from a unified temporal intensity model for all user-item pairs. Correspondingly, we derive Recurrent Intensity Models (RIMs) to extend from recurrent ItemRec models with minimal changes. The second difference between recommendation and marketing is in the temporal domains where they operate. While recommendation demands immediate responses in real-time, marketing campaigns are often long-term, setting goals to cover a given percentage of all opportunities for a given item in a given period of time. We formulate both considerations into a constrained optimization problem we call online match (OnlnMtch) and derive a solution we call Dual algorithm. Simply put, Dual modifies the real-time ItemRec scores such that the marketing constraints can be met with least compromises in user-centric utilities. Finally, our connections between recommendation and marketing may lead to novel applications. We run experiments where we use marketing as an alternative to cold-start item exploration, by setting a minimal-exposure constraint for every item in the audience base. Our experiments are available at \url{}
One-sentence Summary: We repurpose an item-recommender system to recommend users for item providers for the purpose of content promotion and diversity.
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