The Connected Business
The guy had his sphincter sucked so far up his butt he could barely speak. He was squeaking. Literally squeaking. Hopping from one foot to the other, crossing and uncrossing his legs, occasionally panting and, yes, squeaking.
We were discussing the Apple Watch. I say discussing, but actually it could hardly be called a discussion. I mentioned two words – apple, and, watch – and he started squeaking and, quite clearly, he sucked his sphincter up his butt.
The excitement’s rather passed me by I’m afraid. I mean, I get it and everything – the whole wearables opportunity is a good one, but, you know, just ‘not yet’. I’m just not sure I’m ready to wear a big, thick rubberized lump of eh, rubber, on my wrist 24x7x365 in order to be advised later that evening that I had a heart attack at lunchtime. I think I’ll probably know soon enough if that happens. And as for all the other useful things those desperately clever wearables can do, well, I can’t think of a single one that would make me want to actually wear one.
That will change of course. I may not even have a choice. I was reminded of that as I watched a hapless shopper leave a grocery store recently with a security tag still buried somewhere in his bags between the petit pois and Petit Filous. It prompted four large security guards to actively, ‘help him find his receipt…’ Not all wearables will be voluntary. Technology is already being stitched into clothing and shoes – you can even have medical wearables that transmit data and regulate your heartbeat without you even knowing.
So will the Apple Watch move the market along the adoptive curve of wearable and connected technology? Absolutely. Resistance is futile. Seb James, Group CEO of Dixons Carphone revealed recently that the average home in the UK currently has 12 internet connected devices in it. That’s set to rise to around 70 within two or three years. Seven. Zero.
So if ‘the connected consumer’ is alive and well and living with 70 connected devices in the home, it really isn’t too early to ask about the ‘connected business’. Not simply the number of devices connected in a business, but how and what and why they’re connected. Devices that improve remote working and collaboration. Devices that provide data and improve performance and business efficiencies. Devices that, wait for it, connect businesses directly to the immediate and constantly changing needs of their customers.
Now that would be technology worth getting excited about. But from a brand awareness perspective, how far along that path is your current inbound marketing capability? I’ll stick my neck out and hazard a guess – not very. How can you possibly be entitled to wear an Apple Watch when a big night out is currently automating a shit email asking your customer why they haven’t responded to your previously automated shit email. The answer is because your entire B2B marketing strategy is shit.
That’s the guy I was talking to. Completely devoid of any content strategy, digital, B2B social media or creative marketing thought whatsoever. If he wasn’t so utterly useless, he’d be dangerous. And yet he doesn’t even need a license to drive an Apple Watch.
I think there’s a way to go before the wearable technology opportunity really finds its place in B2B marketing. Yes indeed - It’s going to take a lot more than a watch to make me suck anyone’s sphincter. Or words to that effect.