Here are some thoughts on how digital might change how we see the world and how the future looks for 2020.
They call it digital disruption and it’s not hard to see why. Technological trends that change how consumers interact with brands are putting marketers under pressure. Staying ahead requires time and resources but it is essential to understand the new, the fascinating or the downright weird. Kodak, Blackberry and Nokia were all market leaders but failed to spot the new opportunities. But how to separate the zeitgeist-defining trends from the fleeting fads? One way is to identify whether the innovation has tangible benefit to consumers, like convenience, lower prices and new ways of communicating.
So what’s coming up? Wearable technology is here and will enable new benefits like detailed health tracking – weight, heart-rate, cholesterol levels. It will give people more control over their health and disease prevention. But this impacts privacy, of course, if insurers push for greater transparency.
A change in ownership
Consumer attitudes towards ownership are changing – take Spotify and Netflix as examples. So brands need to create services that are less focused on ownership of material products and more about accessibility. Crowd-sourced businesses will grow and Airbnb, Uber and Zipcar have already disrupted their existing markets and taken major share.
Connective technologies have enabled the sharing of scarce and idle resources reconnecting people and communities and saving money.
But whilst the crowd economy leads to greater engagement, it could also lead to greater consumer impatience. People just won’t wait and will ditch brand loyalty for accessibility. So in retail, for example, click-and-collect models proliferate today but for the digital future, drones might dominate as they offer timed home delivery which is even more convenient.