All posts in “Sensors”

connected-life

Connect With Customers by Leveraging Smartphone Sensors

We not only live in a world of billions of smartphones, but we now also live in a world of sensors, soon to number in the trillions. As smartphones start to really live up their name, new models are being outfitted with an increasing number of sophisticated sensors that can pick up cues from a user’s immediate environment. Samsung’s Galaxy S4, for instance, has nine sensors that provide a glimpse into someone’s physical world. Apart from embedded smartphone sensors, there are external sensors — from iBeacons to connected devices within the internet of things category. People are moving through their daily lives with a great variety of sensors on and around them — in their homes and cars and the stores they walk into. Marketers need to tap into the treasure trove of sensor data to inform their dialogue with customers and create highly relevant, personal and intimate interactions. At no other time in history have companies been able to learn so much about their consumers, the actions they take and circumstances they open, tweet, click, “like,” redeem, book or buy. Here are five ways companies can leverage smart sensors to create great customer experiences: 1. The traffic-jam experience. Many companies have started using location sensors for geotargeting, but as this tactic is used more frequently, marketers will need to push the creativity envelope further than simply accessing consumers’ whereabouts. A smartphone’s GPS sensor provides a window into what is happening around a person. Marketers can tap into third-party data streams like nearby traffic conditions, transit disruptions and other real-time situational factors to personalize and contextualize interactions. What’s more powerful? “Enjoy $1 off coffee today” or

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heavy delays due to an accident. Enjoy $1 off a coffee. It’s going to be a long ride.” 2. The highness experience. In office buildings, malls, airports and other multistory structures, altimeter sensors measuring elevation can let companies know not only that a person is on a block or near a building but also the floor they took the elevator to. As more companies try to drive foot traffic to brick-and-mortar stores through mobile devices, leveraging altitude as a trigger for campaigns will provide more accurate and intriguing messaging. (Look up. We’re right above you. Visit us and earn double loyalty points.”) 3. The emotionally distressed experience. If someone is having a bad day, his or her spouse may steer clear or try to bring cheer via a gift or a compliment. From Intel to Samsung, the biggest technology companies are developing tools that can infer emotions by assessing how hastily a person types and mistakes made as well as by using cameras to read the mood on a face. Marketers could develop interactions with customers to play on certain attitudes and try to turn moods around. If people received a free gift from a company when they were having a rough week, their brand loyalty might be boosted. Companies will also be able to anticipate consumers’ emotional state (like dreading the dentist or stressing over a board meeting) based on their attitude historically to certain weather or to types of calendar appointments. Analyzing the results of emotion-based campaigns will be critical on an individual level, though, since everyone responds differently to stress or angst. Some people might be annoyed by a company’s intervention effort, though, while others would welcome it. 4. The speed experience. Movement, speed and orientation data available through accelerometer and gyroscope sensors can provide interesting insights for triggering campaigns. A company wouldn’t want to distract consumers with a push alert as they drove a highway at 60 mph. This would promote bad driving and people are likely to ignore the message. Mobile interactions should occur when people can give proper attention, like when they window-shop or stop for lunch. Use of orientation data can also help keep marketing budgets in check. instead of targeting all individuals nearby, marketers can use sensors to send offers to people walking away from a store who’ve not come in and thereby increase the return on investment. 5. The hot and wet experience. Heat, humidity and pressure sensors provide precise

readings of environmental conditions related to a person’s exact location. Active-lifestyle marketers can tap into temperature and hygrometer sensors to suggest real-time modifications to someone’s workout based on past performance in specific situations. (“You may want to slow down. We are at 83 percent humidity.”) Retailers, consumer-packaged goods companies, travel and food and beverage firms can self-police how often they reach out to customers by using historical performance data; thus the companies can push messages only when they are hyperrelevant and likely to drive action. If a coffeehouse obtains better results from iced-coffee promotions when it’s hotter than 85 degrees, it should not target people in conditions below this threshold. Data from sensors is not enough, of course. The interactions that will have the biggest impact and drive the best results will be those that are highly personal, not just highly contextual. This evolving “system of engagement layer” of smart interaction lives on top of all existing tech systems from companies and is the future of customer relationships.

blow-your-mind

My So Called Connected Life

The idea of the “always connected” consumer has really only emerged only in the past two to three years. With the proliferation of smartphones, brands now have the opportunity to connect with their customers on the go and in real time, through the powerful mini-computers that people carry around nearly 24/7. The idea of being “always connected,” though, is morphing into something so much more than smartphones. Electronics companies, automobile manufacturers, hospitality companies, airlines and more are providing the opportunity for people to connect through powerful screens in all aspects of our lives. Whether it is through

the connected TV, screens on household appliances or in-dash in autos, people are increasingly afforded the opportunity to be “on” – and more addressable to brands than ever before. Until now, the winners in mobile have been defined as those with a specific, unique strategy for the channel. This strategy differed from their Internet marketing initiatives, taking advantage of the uniqueness of the opportunity to connect with people based on their location and current situation, thus boosting relevance and, consequently, brand loyalty. As more hardware companies and automakers introduce new screens for our everyday lives – be it refrigerators or touchscreen kiosks in hotel rooms – consumers are going to want to be able to interact with apps, content and media across all connected devices. Today, each device and screen works independently and most apps are limited to traditional web and smartphones. A huge brand engagement and loyalty-building opportunity is being missed with one-time, limited or everyday-use devices by having apps available only on one or two endpoints. It will be critical for brands to develop omni-channel strategies so

that the transition between screens is seamless and fluid. There are three things that must be considered when developing an omni-channel app strategy, though:

  • Personalization across all screens is crucial: The idea of living in a world in which every device really knows and understands a user is becoming more of a reality. If consumers have to reintroduce themselves to every screen, they will grow frustrated and disenchanted with the experience and the brand.
  • Capitalize on the uniqueness of each screen: A consumer’s intent is different across all screens. On an

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    want helpful information and offers for their destination city. For example, a retailer could provide a coupon to encourage the customer to visit the flagship store in the city they are visiting. The same retailer could send a push message to the consumer’s smartphone when he or she is in their hometown to drive in-app purchases.

  • Use the sensors on each device: Each device can help a brand drive true relevance by being situationally-aware of the user’s surroundings. Cars have their unique sensors and cameras that can deliver this, while smartphones and household appliances have their own signals. Brands must determine how to capitalize on all of the multi-dimensional data from signals to provide a true hyper-local and 360-degree user experience.

In the future, the “winners” across digital will have omni-channel apps, content and media that allow for real-time personalization across all form factors — smartphone, Web, TV, automobile, airplane seatbacks, kiosks and wearable computing. Apps need to deliver the right mobile context and content for the screen, which will allow for increased brand engagement opportunities and long-term loyalty.