What if the things you were thinking about buying already knew you were considering a purchase? Much like going on a date, where the person you were dating wanted to look their best for you, what if the product went through a similar process, primping it’s hair and donning an inviting smile to present itself in the best possible light?
Welcome to the Internet of Things, where our intentions always precede us.
The simple act of inspecting a product, or weighing its potential, will cause ten times as many sensors and emotion-analyzing algorithms to peer back. Your prospective product will be inspecting you far more thoroughly than you’ll be inspecting it.
Yes, this kind of reverse surveillance has traditionally been done in the digital world, where our search history and traffic patterns become fodder for marketing gurus everywhere. But physical products are in no way immune from these kinds anticipatory algorithms.
In their own conniving ways, future “things” products will use a variety of tools to position themself in a better light. Much like the lone Snickers bar that always manages to work its way to the edge of the shelf and say “pick me, pick me” when you’re most vulnerable, ingenious new products combined with smart merchandising will manipulate everything from viewing angles, to lighting, ambient sounds, smells, and subtle but attention-getting music, all for the sole purpose of pushing you a millimeter or two closer to that all important wallet zone.
Every consumer comes with a complex bundle of wants and needs. As a casual observer it’s rare that someone could pick up on the miniscule visual queues given off by most buyers. But we are constantly emitting information. Tons of it.
The same micro-gestures that make us bad at the game of poker, make us infinitely more readable, and consequently infinitely more impressionable, than we would ever suspect.
Unlike data junkies that rely on activities from the past to predict future purchases, “things” products will be able to tell what we’re thinking now, and even anticipate what we’ll do next.
Welcome to the world where our products are smarter than we are, and the marketing professional of the future becomes the all-knowing strategy wizard lurking behind the proverbial curtain.