As connected as we all are these days, there is, amazingly, still a whole new dimension to achieve.
So far the internet has done a brilliant job of bringing people closer together – be it in a personal capacity, or allowing a brand to come to life and show its human side – but what about the inanimate objects around us?
We’re ready to open up communication with all the appliances and devices that make our lifestyles what they are.
Imagine a world where you can update the software on your washing machine to make it increasingly more eco-friendly? Or program it to buzz your cell phone when a cycle is finished?
It’s time to realize just how pivotal the Internet of Things (IoT) will be to marketing success in the near future.
Opening up new avenues of connection
As IoT breathes digital life to more and more devices, manual interactions will become increasingly outdated.
Take for example a simple vending machine. Right now you need to physically walk up to one and put in your choice and money to interact with it. What if it was online though?
There could be a myriad of interaction choices – you could send a message to the machine over social media that elicits a reaction; you could pay online; the vending machine could even have its own “online interface”.
What does something like this mean for a marketer? Suddenly interactions that they could only quantify in sales become a virtual goldmine.
You could use that vending machine in your experiential marketing to take a physical experience online, doing your amplification for you. You could use a QR code to activate the vending machine, and that same QR code could take the user to specific marketing material – the options are endless.
What it definitely means is that there’s no reason why an experience should stay analog. IoT is the final step in full circle dialogue between you, your consumers and your products.
IoT allows solutions over advertising
Consumers are over-saturated by advertising and traditional marketing techniques. Being constantly marketed at creates a jaded feeling. This is why content marketing has developed – to add more quality to a consumer’s life in exchange for them taking in your brand.
IoT offers marketers the ultimate opportunity to become a useful part of a consumer’s life. Most might not see this at the beginning, rather seeing 24 hour access to consumers as an opportunity for always on advertising.
But that approach is so misguided that these marketers will very quickly see their market share drop. IoT comes with such a responsibility that people will quickly shy away from the brands that take advantage.
Rather, the brands that take a fresh look at what it is to market will succeed through this avenue. You are no longer working hard to get your consumer’s attention. You are built into their lives, and the only “marketing” you need to do is communication that assists.
For example, a connected car could feed the driver adverts every time they turn on the engine, or it could allow them to order new parts directly. It could allow a manufacturer to reward drivers for certain actions. Marketing will be all about experience.
More connectivity means more data
Marketers eat, sleep and drink data. It’s what allows us to predict how someone will interact with and react to products, campaigns and experiences.
Bringing products to life opens up a whole new avenue of data to explore and understand.
Big data just got bigger.
Brands will be able to tell how and when their products are used, and be able to tweak them to suit needs better than ever before. Products can become more personalised to certain target markets, and more functionalities can be stored and unlocked online.
Is your brand ready to get more connected?