Hey, dear digital freaks! Here we are again, bringing you industry news.
Since 2018 has begun, we have decided to delight you with what we can expect to change in the tech world in the next 12 months and affect digital marketing trends, too.
1) Wearable devices will be designing activity-based brand experiences
As more money is spent on wearable devices and consumers start to adapt there will be an increase in the range of devices available to consumers. The range available will increase to different ranges, body parts and needs. According to i-scoop wearable technologies will shift to new markets and areas of the human body by 2026 (i-scoop, 2016). This year we have seen Fitbit, Alexa, Google home and Apple Watch 2 take off, people are increasingly using them more as part of their everyday lives.
This means new data for retailers!
As we adapt to new technologies, retailers will be able to collect ‘super data’ such as a user’s in-store shopping frequency, their basket size, value per item, length of stay, etc. – meaning that online advertising placements and scheduling can become more acutely defined. It will also allow retailers to access personality traits about the customer, such as what you listen to, what you “like”, and what you like to browse.
Once the industry has made advancements in the data wearables collect about their customers, retailers will be able to build a fully personalized experience of the entire browsing and buying journey.
It is hoped that wearables will bring greater relevance to the consumer when it comes to their spending habits, however, this ultimately relies on the way marketers and retailers handle the data that this new technology is able to collect.
Being a highly personalized engagement platform, wearables create opportunities for delivering advertising with much greater context and relevance to the user-solidifying the trend away from advertising as an interruption, toward native advertising – however, if brands want to create truly positive and memorable experiences via these new devices they will need to get smart with two things:
- Personal data, i.e. using insights from a much wider data pool, whilst respecting customer privacy on a whole new level;
- Leveraging things that customers already use and like to get their brand message across in physically creative ways.
Since wearables essentially turn advertising into a form of activity-based engagement, brands will need to think about how to actively engage their users, rather than simply relaying generic brand messages.
2) Companies grow through digital business extensions
The digital core will provide enterprises with an information-rich, scalable foundation. In 2018, companies will grow by leveraging that information and scale, extending their digital capabilities into every facet of the organization – as well as into new markets and new businesses – through digital business extensions.
Amazon’s journey – from online bookseller to online-everything marketplace, to cloud platform, to online- and offline-everything platform, including groceries – is a story of smart digital extensions. In other words, Amazon can run some of those businesses better because of its digital capabilities.
To make the right digital extensions, companies need a “strategic backflow” from digital capabilities to corporate strategy. This backflow must be embedded in strategic planning rather than based on heroic behaviors, water cooler conversations and special relationships.
That means ensuring that corporate strategy and, ideally, all functional strategies (e.g., marketing, manufacturing, logistics) have mechanisms to consider digital extensions. Ask: “What can I do now?” and “What should I do next?”.
3) Artificial intelligence gets smarter and more practical
According to a Gartner survey, about 59% of organizations are still in their initial stages of gathering information to build their AI strategies. It’s expected that through 2018, AI will be increasingly used to enhance decision making, improve customer experience, and reinvent business models.
When it comes to technology trends, artificial intelligence (AI) will determine the long-term winners and losers. In the past, people were not building AI with the right goals in mind, but that will change in 2018 as companies become more information-driven and use neural networks for continuous learning and productivity.
A big bastion of AI deployment is IoT (Internet of Things), because it generates an enormous amount of information. Other rich areas for AI advances include employee information systems and processes, clinical health advisement systems and IT service management (managing millions of computers is untenable for humans).
Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs), a class of artificial neural networks, will evolve and trigger an explosion of opportunities:
- Very Deep CNNs will push computer vision and natural language processing (NLP) to achieve emotional intelligence with end-to-end conversation capabilities.
- CNNs will open new opportunities in fields such as system-driven drug synthesis models, leading to cost-effective drug discovery.
- Improvements in NLP will lead to automated content generation.
Surely, there will be changes that will affect the marketing world aside from these. But, don’t despair, we are here to provide guidance and a helpful hand.