The Internet of Things (IoT) is spreading across the globe, and it’s moving quickly. But many people are still trying to figure out one question, what exactly is it? Trends and innovation in technology seem to move faster than light itself – and light travels pretty quickly (186,000 miles per second, to be exact).
Remember the late ’90s Disney movie Smart House? As usual, Disney was way ahead of its time, being that now, in 2016, smart houses are a reality. Simply put, IoT is the interconnectivity of electronic devices to the Internet, enabling them to exchange information through a wireless communication network. So essentially, connecting everyday items such as coffee makers, lamps, headphones and more to the Internet.
We already see the use of IoT in items such as this Smart Herb Garden and wearable devices such as the Fitbit, a 24/7 fitness tracking device that also allows you to connect with other users for some friendly (or not so friendly) athletic competition. Millions of people worldwide are using IoT devices, like smartphones, and don’t even realize it.
Not only is the emergence of IoT revolutionizing the way we see and participate in everyday activities, it is also impacting the world of marketing. Working at a technology PR firm, we monitor the latest trends, such as IoT, to learn how they are impacting everyday communications.
So get out your notepad – here are a couple of things to understand about the evolving relationship between IoT and marketing.
Marketing is all about understanding your consumer and target audiences. The data that IoT devices generate has the potential to impact the way you shape and shift a campaign by customizing the experience for each user. Data from IoT devices across the globe enables marketers to better understand individual behavioral patterns in more detail, painting a more complete picture of the consumer.
As of 2015, there were already an estimated ten billion devices connected globally. That means there is a gold mine of information to be used for strategizing and planning marketing campaigns. Marketers can use data from the IoT to study the consumer, communicate directly with them and create strategies to improve a client’s customer service. The same way that we use smartphones and smart cars to enhance our everyday lives, “smart” data-driven marketing can improve the strategies behind creating campaigns to deliver more targeted content that has a better chance of converting brand advocates into life-long customers.
Super Social Media
Social media this, social media that – we talk about it so much that it’s easy to tune some things out. However, this time you might want to pay attention. Studies show that 65% of adults in America use social networking sites like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn. As smart IoT devices integrate with social media networks, it provides even more detailed data about your audience’s likes, interests, activities and more.
IoT lets you get real-time insight on what consumers are buying, looking for, using the most frequently and more – so you can create marketing messages that specifically relate to their lifestyles. For example, if someone uses a Fitbit, that can tell you about their exercise habits. For a beginner athlete, an apparel company can communicate via social media platforms to send coupon codes for new running shoes or customized promotions for a local 5K.
Data from IoT devices can also help you identify trends and patterns of your target audience, enabling you to craft compelling and personalized content for a social campaign that gets higher engagement rates.
Creative Connections – Endless Possibilities
As more devices become interconnected, the ideas and possibilities for the use of IoT for marketing are endless. Developers are still creating new ways to implement IoT into everyday items. For public relations and marketing professionals, storytelling will be more effectively crafted to create better connections between a business and its audience. It’s also likely that audience exposure to the media will become more accessible – who would’ve thought that was possible?
Traditional media consists of print, radio and broadcast news outlets; however, with news being spread through mobile devices, social media, blogging and more, media platforms are becoming both more diverse and niche at the same time. Public relations professionals have to transform their traditional strategies to reach your target audience through many different platforms.
Technology trends have a direct influence on the evolution of marketing, communications and public relations. It’s all about understanding your audiences, knowing what they want to hear, what interests them and where they’re receptive to various messages. IoT introduces a way to answer those questions that has never been seen before. It’s important to understand IoT and its uses in marketing so that you are prepared to evolve along with the technology available. The changes are exciting, and adoption will continue to rise. In summary, stay ready so you never have to get ready. IoT is not coming; it’s here.
Do you have a new and innovative technology that is disrupting how we live or work? Gabriel Marketing Group offers public relations and integrated marketing services for high-growth tech companies. Contact us to learn more.