You are walking around the shopping mall with your shopping list but something weird is happening. Every time you change an aisle your phone seems to come alive beeping away cheerfully! You look at the screen and see a list of products that has magically appeared all of them vying for your attention “buy me”, no “buy me” “ I am going at discount”, “Try me out for the best experience” etc. While you are wondering how these products found you out and how they know what you are looking for, you realize that the world has changed after all, and that the Internet of things (IoT) is knocking on your door.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is going to change how you experience your next shopping spree. How? Well all the objects and devices with their sensors, connected through the Internet will relay a lot of information about how you are using them, where you are using them, when are you using them. All this data will be mined by the products manufacturer and marketing companies who will compile it into information that enables them to design, contour and make improved products that are better able to meet your needs and wants. Advertisers will be able to build profiles based on your preferences and reach out to you in unique and personalized ways. They will ultimately convey messages or content that is in line with the consumer’s mindset, targeting people at optimal times and places through nontraditional media. Sound incredulous? It is already happening as many of the products around you like your smart TV, cellphone and console are “listening” to you and gathering data on what you are doing most of the time without you even realizing what they are up to imagine what would happen when you have a home full of IoT enabled devices.
The brands we use will become our life long acquaintances as they have a continuous dialogue with us through continuous interaction. Imagine a device that reminds you to replace a worn out part or tells you a newer version is out with improved features and you might want to try it. Advertising will become in a sense crowd sourced as the creative impulses are tempered with information made available through the IoT. New models of marketing will develop that move beyond the legacy methods opening up completely unharnessed horizons for companies.
Digital Marketing will move beyond customer relationship management as the information gleaned becomes more personalized allowing customized and targeted approaches to reach consumers. E-commerce will become ever-present and pervasive in every aspect of our life; sometimes maybe even intrusive.
Making sense of the IoT is going to be challenging for marketers as the influx of devices will require them to consider context and apply methods and skills differently from traditional techniques. Turning big data into information will require advanced statistical models and software to make sense of all the information flow allowing them to create highly accurate profiles of the consumers. One of the best benefits that will come is from the unfiltered nature of the information that they can get making understanding consumer behavior just a little bit easier. Marketing will become more about excellent content, emotive appeal and more device and platform neutral as a multitude of IoT enabled devices make way in to our lives.
Remember the next time you go shopping if a carrot calls out to you saying “eat me”, or if you find the milk cartons “mooing” away, or if the latest perfume says “smell me” or a t-shirt calls out “I want to be all over you” don’t think that the world has gone crazy, it is only the world of the Internet of Things calling!!!