As anyone in marketing knows, the industry changes fast. It’s part of our job to make sure that we keep up with the pace of change in order to deliver great work for our clients. 2016 has seen some incredibly interesting trends, spearheaded by huge global businesses, that we think suggest that the future of marketing is going to be even more driven by technological advancements. These are pretty exciting developments that go beyond the realms of what the average person might imagine when they think of marketing.
Here are 3 tech trends that we think could be the future of marketing.
The Internet of Things
The Internet of Things (IoT) refers to the network of physical devices we use every day that are connected to the internet and can exchange data with one another. Think smartphones, laptops, smart watches, TVs and even things like cars, cameras and some fridges. As more devices get connected, the network is ever growing – as is interest in its the potential uses. Many industries, like social and health care, are taking an interest in IoT, and marketing is no exception.
So how are market leaders making use of the Internet of Things?
Earlier this year, Malibu developed the COCO-NECT cup which allows party goers to skip the queue when on a night out, simply by twisting the bottom of the “smart-tech” cup. An alert is then sent to the bartender, telling them that the user requires a top-up of Malibu. The user’s location is even pinpointed and tracked to ensure that they get their drink. Pretty nifty, right? But this isn’t just a stunt. Malibu proved that they are serious about IoT by also rolling out 40,000 “connected bottles” earlier in the year. These allowed consumers to access prizes and content such as recipes, bar listings, and playlists, simply by tapping an NFC (Near-Field Communication) enabled phone onto the picture of a sunset on the bottle.
But is IoT the future of marketing? It may well be, with Peroni even more recently teaming up with Ocado to run a beta launch of “Press for Peroni” – a device which attaches to a fridge and runs via an iPhone app – which adds a pack of Peroni to the users Ocado order when pressed. Right now, IoT in marketing is very much in its test stages, but our bet is on more brands turning to it in ther future for new and creative approaches to marketing.
Chances are you’ve heard of virtual reality, but have you heard of augmented Reality? If so, you’ve probably been playing 2016’s ‘it’ game, Pokemon Go.
If you missed the buzz, augmented reality (AR) is simply the use of technology to alter a user’s view of the world around them, most usually by imposing computer-generated images onto it on your screen.
AR has been around for a while, but 2016 has seen it really pick up speed. Pokemon Go is a great example of AR in action, but other notable uses like Snapchat lenses really suggest to us that the trend is only going to continue to grow and evolve. Why? Because it’s accessible, personal, and versatile. AR allows brands to reach out to lots of people in lots of really creative ways. It seems that AR is very much the future of marketing, and we don’t think it will be long before we see more examples of it being used.
According to Marketing Week, 77% of content shared online is via chat apps like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. This is called “dark social” – the side of social media and content sharing that marketers can’t see.
Lots of brands are already trying to take advantage of chat apps – Greggs recently created a VIP WhatsApp to gather lovers of their Festive Bake for freebies, and Adidas created “Tango squads”, which are essentially online chats that form communities for young football lovers to share content. The idea is that by using dark social, brands are where their audiences are.
Facebook, on the other hand, are looking to capitalise on the power of dark social in an entirely different way by integrating chat bots into Facebook messenger. Brands can now advertise and use chat bots on the platform, with over 30,000 bots being built for Messenger since April. Brands can use chat bots for a variety of reasons, from providing information on things like train times, to large scale marketing campaigns like Channel 4 did for the second series of ‘Humans’ which allows audiences to engage with a “Synthetic” from the TV show.
Right now, there are two kinds of Chat Bots – scripted bots and AI bots. A scripted chat bot isn’t as sophisticated as an AI bot, because it’s, well, scripted. AI bots, on the other hand, are built on Natural Language Processing. Essentially, they are designed on the basis of learning and absorbing information. This is a very exciting prospect for businesses because as the tech gets more sophisticated, they can offer customers more personalized services.