The Most Important Tech Trend You Need to Understand Now
February 24, 2016
Invention and innovation in technology will never be as slow as they are right now. As savvy marketers, we see opportunities for our clients, even as the pace of change accelerates.
Just reading that statement probably gave you a knot in your stomach. And guess what, there’s a syndrome for that – it’s called NoMoPhobia. Mobile devices have changed consumers. And if your business model is committed to customer experience, it’s time to understand this.
The average smartphone owner interacts with their mobile device 150 times per day. It’s not just NoMoPhobia that afflicts us, but a hunched posture from texting and phantom vibrations when it isn’t even being worn. As crazy as that seems, our real challenge is how mobile has changed customer behavior and expectations for brands.
Do you remember the character Veruca Salt of Willy Wonka fame? “I want it now!” Well, meet Veruca, your new customer. Mobile is creating a very demanding consumer.
If your mobile website takes more than three seconds to load, you’ve just lost 40 percent of your visitors.
Too long in the latte line? Pre-order your venti latte on the Starbucks app and you can cut in line at the store. Can’t take the time to type, touch or click? Ask Alexa (Amazon’s Echo), and she’ll find the answers on Wikipedia, then dim the lights and turn up the music.
Pandora and Spotify are training a generation that pays for access to everything without the hassles of ownership. Multi-screen, binge-watching cable-cutters are changing business models for broadcast and cable – if they survive.
Content may be king, but content out of context is spam. Devices know and respond to your location and the time of day. Apps like Waze route drivers faster because the community provides context (like traffic reports) to the map content. Beacons in airports work with apps to customize your experience. Proper context will become an expectation.
Customers expect to interact in a store, through a catalog, on a website, via an app, on social media or on the phone. And they expect their experience to be consistent across all platforms. This is a huge challenge for businesses that use multiple agencies or in-house marketing groups.
Hyper personalization will become the norm, with not just content, but products themselves. It’s happening already with products that learn your preferences (Nest, Netflix) or are created for an individual (3D printers).
Companies will be rewarded for making the customer’s life easier. Apps that allow you to deposit checks from your phone, pay with a click or text an emoji to order a pizza are examples of simple genius.
Artificial intelligence (AI) will help us wrangle the data that lets us predict and anticipate customer needs. Smart TV predicts and loads your content ahead of time. IBM’s Watson takes unstructured data like newspaper articles, business data, research reports and training using natural language to provide insight at a human level for even small and medium sized businesses.
In future articles we’ll cover emerging individual technologies. We would love to know what trends you are seeing, too. Email me at email@example.com.