The lines of distinction between network and device are blurring. Embedded sensors, image
recognition and even augmented reality are integrating into our lives. With the proliferation of
devices connected to networks (what we call the Internet of Things or IOT) so are increasing the
number digital touch points.What will be the gateway to the consumer in the near future? The
smartphone or home appliance, maybe both?
Most recently though, simple devices have taken the stage such as Amazon’s Dash button.
Pressing on the button allows you to immediately order an item through your Amazon Prime
account. You do this without looking at the price or comparing it with other brands. In an online
world where we’ve relinquished our privacy for advertisers to target us more directly, is the next
step letting go of our own choice? Is convenience so tempting that it will drive consumers to
disconnect from the amount of money they spend? My guess is no. These buttons may turn out to
be more of a branding device in disguise than a functional service.
Could it be that Amazon forgot that one of their major marketing breakthroughs had to do with
offering suggestions for complementary items at the moment of purchase? Suggestions, not
decisions. It seems reasonable to assume that people like it when they’re given choices close to
their heart, rather than when choices are taken away from them altogether.
Let’s now consider taking a step beyond just offering complementary products to offering
complementary interactions between products. That may be where we as marketers should be
heading. Brands and products in the house should not only compliment each other but also
interact with each to provide data notifications. For example, if your Bosch dishwasher is set for an overnight load, your Nest thermostat should receive a message to automatically adjust the
temperature, so you can enjoy lower heating bills.Seamless integration between services in the
house could mean large savings as well create an appreciation of brand innovativeness by
consumers. Adopting these technological collaborations early on can be a great doorway towards
strong brand loyalty for you.