Magazine article Marketing

CES 2012: Key Trends for Marketers

Magazine article Marketing

CES 2012: Key Trends for Marketers

Article excerpt

For those who missed out on the event itself, Marketing asked Eric Bader, president and chief strategy officer, worldwide, at media network Initiative, to outline the show's most salient themes.

Every year the great and good of media, marketing and technology descend on Las Vegas to marvel at the latest gadgets and media wizardry. As the world's biggest event of its kind, the Consumer Electronics Show now has great significance for marketers, providing an indicator of some of the key consumer trends likely to influence their strategies.

Underlying all these opportunities is a vast amount of data about consumer behaviour. Brands that can extrapolate valuable findings from this deluge of information and turn them into creative, engaging and achievable ideas will create significant competitive advantages for themselves.

Below are the key trends that will affect consumers' lives and so should be high on the marketing agenda.

- The new age of shopping

Various technologies on display at CES are having a big impact on retail and how people shop. Virtual dressing rooms, in-car apps that direct you to the nearest store, indoor mapping systems, shopping lists, personal history stored in the cloud and access to social networks from mobile devices are all changing consumers' decision-making processes and behaviours.

- Why does this matter to marketers?

The combination of mobile shopping-assistance apps, search engines, access to social networks and cloud services are all making shopping a much easier process. The barriers between a consumer's first exposure to a brand, making a purchase decision and taking action to buy are being broken down - or eliminated - by technology.

- In-car technology

This is not solely about entertainment. There are powerful applications being added to vehicles that can influence consumers' decisions. These are specific to time and content - affecting people while they are commuting or running errands, for example. Ford has a new smartphone app that provides real-time statistics on the driver's vehicle and real-time interactions with their social network.

- Why does this matter to marketers?

Apps that are integrated into vehicle systems offer marketers an environment of personalised information that is specific to the driver's route to their destination. This will create interesting opportunities for brands to relate to drivers on their way to the store, while they are commuting or when they are on holiday, and has implications for businesses in the given locality. It also increases the importance of search as a tool for reaching potential shoppers.

- New networks on the go

The integration of social networks into devices, platforms and products is making social behaviour applicable to consumers in new contexts. TV, radio, gaming and interactive systems in cars are all being enhanced by enabling consumers to participate in their social networks while on the move.

- Why does this matter to marketers?

For consumers, having access to their trusted social circles is making TV, radio and even driving a richer experience. This will extend the time consumers spend with devices and content, giving brands more opportunities to interact with them.

- A digital health agenda

A wide range of personal health-related devices now have connectivity to the internet, feature mobile applications and incorporate access to social networks. …

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