Jeremiah Owyang took to the stage this afternoon at Le Web and delivered a spellbinding talk on digital trends, how they are shaping consumer behaviour and how businesses can gain competitive advantage and innovate.
I have followed Jeremiah's nuggets for many years, since before he joined Altimeter when he was one of the world's first social media analysts - at Forrester with Charlene Li. I was taken aback by Jeremiah's presenting style today. He talks fast and is well-drilled, moving fast from one concept to the next. It was really very much a mental roller coaster.
Jeremiah began by talking about how brands need to be anticipating digital trends - that this is what is required in order to capture opportunities and avoid the threat of being left behind. He talked about influences on consumer behaviour from media types, word of mouth, through various channels and on multiple platforms, from mobile to Google Glass.
He then put forward a three business disruptions relevant in this debate. The dynamic customer, the adaptive enterprise and the sentient world.
To illustrate the dynamic customer journey, Jeremiah showed how Tesco ads on the Korean subway allow customers to scan and add products to online shopping baskets. He said that inflexible organisations need to adapt and synchronize for the changing customer. Questions they must answer: what sources of info should you track, and what should matter. A study by Eloqua says only 5% of companies are able to do this.
The topic of the sentient world really captured my attention, as it's a topic that I'm very absorbed by right now through work and recent research. Jeremiah described this concept as a future 'when everything electronic around us comes alive' with internet-enabled devices powering society. This is commonly referred to as body data, quantified self and self tracking. Jeremiah also mentioned the Body API.
In summary, some notes from Jeremiah's sentiend world talk:
- Everything electronic captures and gives off data
- The Pebble watch is a perfect example of the Body API manifest
- GE's 'moodometer' was shown as a case study
- Smart Pyjamas that sense human signals to keep babies healthy were also a case study
- Inamo was mentioned - the digital restaurant in London with Microsoft Surface tables
- Questions we must answer for the sentient world:
- If everything gives off data, how will we sort the intelligence from the noise
- How will we communicate with inanimate objects?
- At what point does the new world become self-sufficient?
Probably because I'm on the same wavelength as Jeremiah Owyang, as in I get everything he's talking about, I found his talk hugely engaging. He is clearly a man with a brain the size of a planet though (that's where I would say we are not on similar wavelengths!) and I hope to be able to catch up with him again some day soon.