As a writer who loves covering emerging technology and human being, I'm surrounded by technology.
Each morning, I wake up to my Amazon Echo's alarm and ask Alexa about the weather. On my train ride home from work, I'm taking Snapchat selfies using AR filters. When I get to my house, I ask Alexa to turn the lights to a specific hue. Then I ask my smart TV to launch Netflix or play a basic VR game on my Google Cardboard. Before bed, I might check my fitness levels with a smart scale or use my toothbrush's app to figure out what areas of my mouth I'm missing.
It's safe to say that I'm a big fan of emerging media, technology, and innovation. As an individual, this technology is already impacting my life. As a marketer, I'm curious to see how brands could leverage smart technology.
With all the technologies out there, it's hard to cut through online chatter and determine which innovations are mostly just hype and which might actually change the way we market.
While many of the major emerging technologies are getting more accessible, you could also still be wondering, "Which might be worth investing in for my industry specifically?" For example, if you run a B2B firm, you might realize augmented reality isn't a practical technology to research. But, at the same time, you might look into AI software or services that can help your team work more efficiently or learn more about customers.
To give you a bird's eye view of some of the most buzzed-about innovations that could impact marketers in the near or distant future, I've collected 45 stats related to four types of emerging technology.
Augmented and Virtual Reality
For years, researchers have hypothesized that virtual reality, which provides viewers a completely immersive and interactive 360-degree visual experience, will hold the best opportunities in gaming, entertainment, and academic industries.
Meanwhile, experts have also thought that augmented reality, a partially immersive but still interactive experience, will thrive in the world of branding and marketing.
By 2023, digital voice ecommerce is expected to triple to an $80 billion industry. (Juniper Research)
Between August 2018 and February 2019, smart speaker ownership increased by 4% (Adobe)
Smart Devices and Appliances
While you may not realize the significance that smart appliances and devices could have on marketing, this is something that I and my colleagues have been paying close attention to. Although this space is still young, it's already seemingly providing interesting opportunities to bigger brands.
As you can imagine, devices like smart TVs could provide great potential for content marketing and branded media, However, a more unique example of an appliance that could provide brand potential is the smart refrigerator.
"I’m excited to see how a smart fridge that can tell me when my avocados are about to spoil can be leveraged by a brand to give me information that might serve me in that particular information, says Amanda Zantal-Wiener, a senior content strategist who creates content for HubSpot that covers news and trends.
But, Zantal-Weiner's excitement doesn't end at smart-home appliances. She's also fascinated by the world of smart cars
"Until we start to see self-driving cars on the road, the idea of connected cars can also be used to help me do more than mindlessly scroll through my phone when I’m using a ride-hailing service, by serving as a distribution channel for real-time, relevant information during that trip. Everything is connected, and I’m excited to see which brands are able to adapt to that earlier on in a way that actually helps customers,” Zantal-Wiener explains.
While the smart appliance space is still fairly nascent and harder to report on statistically at the moment, here are a few interesting stats that highlight why you should keep these technologies on your radar.
According to a Fluent Survey, 55% of internet users already own some type of smart device. (Fluent)
The same survey found that the most common device was a smart television, which 38% of participants owned. The next most commonly owned devices were lighting (17%), thermostats (16%) and security systems (14%), and kitchen appliances (7%). (Fluent)
31% of people ages 18 to 34 and 38% of people over 35 say that their main purchasing concern related to smart appliances is cost. (Fluent)
Consumers over the age of 35 are more worried about hacking and data security on smart appliances than 18 to 34-year-olds. (Fluent)
Image Source: eMarketer
The average cost of a smart-home device is expected to drop by 52% by 2023 (Juniper Research)
In 2018, 70% of TVs sold globally were smart TVs. (Statista)
Navigating the Future of Marketing
Yes, creating voice assistant skills, leveraging AI, and building branded AR/VR experiences might be pretty inaccessible and costly to your company right now and in the near future.
But, if you want to continue to innovate your brand, or be a competitive marketer in the far future, you'll want to keep up with how technology and marketing possibilities are evolving. By keeping up with marketing innovation news, you'll be more prepared to adopt new technologies when they are accessible in the future.