The Connected Consumer is Changing The Face of Marketing: Understanding the Importance of Trust
In January, I wrote about marketing’s "meeting of waters" and how mobile is acting as the connective tissue that's tying together digital and traditional marketing practices. The meeting of waters analogy holds true because we live in an age where people are increasingly becoming connected and these connections are forever changing marketing and how marketers engage consumers. People are connected to each other, to organizations, to machines and more. Moreover, machines are connected to other machines and working on behalf of consumers. Consider the following:
- Over 28 percent of the global population uses the internet, and in most developed countries this number exceeds 75 percent.
- There are 5.3 billion mobile connections — over 54 percent of the global population — and 3.7 billion people carry and use a mobile device of some kind. Within the next few years more people will access the internet via a mobile device than any other means.
- There were 6.1 trillion text messages exchanged around the globe in 2010. Nearly 6 billion text messages are exchanged every day in the U.S.
- Over 500 million people are active Facebook users, each having an average of 130 friends, spending an average of 700 billion minutes on the site and sharing over 30 billion pieces of information each and every month.
- There are 175 million Twitter users, creating 95 million tweets per day.
- Programs offered by retailers that reward shoppers for purchasing are on the rise due to locally relevant marketing and merchandising.
- The number of smartmeter installations are increasing (a smartmeter monitors utility consumption, such as electricity and water). This data is accessible online.
- Sensors are being placed in plants so that they can tweet us when they need to be watered; in carpets so that they can tell us when they need to be cleaned; and in pills so that they can transmit through a Band-Aid and to phone biometric readings as the pill travels through our bodies. Moreover, in some parts of the world, you’ll even find sensors on produce and a wide range of consumer goods. For example, a shopper can immediately discern what farm a head of lettuce came from, the route it took to get to the store and how long it's been sitting on the shelf by simply waving their phone.
The above online and offline activities are just small subsets of what's happening as people go through their daily lives. Consumers always have their mobile device with them, and they're using them to fulfill their needs.