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The Desirability of Connected Products

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Today, desirability of products is manufactured by a brand – messages from an army of advertisers and companies spending billions of euros yearly to create a perception of desirability in their products or services. Tomorrow, the desirability of products will be more about the relationship created between an object and consumer – conversations before, during and after purchase that reflect the understanding of each other’s needs.

This talk explores desirability in the age of connected products – a provocation on designing for form, interaction and tone of voice when products can speak for themselves.

Published in: Design
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The Desirability of Connected Products

  1. 1. The Desirability of Connected Products // Creating new relationships with the things we buy thanks to the Internet of Things J F Grossen Executive Creative Director frog London
  2. 2. Desirability of a product’s form or interaction is primarily about personal preference and subjectivity about the look, feel, taste and smell. It can be a gut feeling or based on repetition of use over time. But more often its the influence of others that make you want one product over another. Ooh, I love that table! Introduction // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 2
  3. 3. Introduction // 3J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 Image Credit: flickr/Steve Rhodes TODAY, DESIRABILITY OF PRODUCTS IS MANUFACTURED BY A BRAND - SOMEONE TELLING YOU THAT YOU WILL LIKE IT. MESSAGES AND MEMES FROM AN ARMY OF ADVERTISERS AND COMPANIES SPENDING BILLIONS OF EUROS YEARLY TO CREATE A DESIRABILITY IN THEIR PRODUCTS OR SERVICES.
  4. 4. Introduction // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 Image Credit: flickr/Life Happens 4 TOMORROW, DESIRABILITY OF PRODUCTS WILL BE MORE ABOUT THE RELATIONSHIP CREATED BETWEEN OBJECT AND CONSUMER - BUILT ON BUILT ON A DEEP UNDERSTANDING OF EACH OTHER’S NEEDS. LIKE MY NEED FOR NAPS AND THE CHAIRS NEED TO CUDDLE.
  5. 5. Introduction // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 Image Credit: flickr/Timo Arnall 5 INTERNET OF THINGS (IOT) TECHNOLOGIES ARE ESSENTIALLY BUILDING NEW CONNECTIONS, ENABLING CONVERSATIONS AND THUS NEW RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN OBJECTS AND BETWEEN PEOPLE AND OBJECTS.
  6. 6. Introduction // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 TO BE DESIRABLE, PRODUCTS WILL BE GIVEN AGENCY - PERCEIVED INTELLIGENCE AND THE ABILITY TO LEARN AND ADAPT TO OUR CHANGING NEEDS. 6
  7. 7. Image Credit: Timo ArnallImage Credit: Gwenael Piaser J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 7 Personality // IN RESPONSE TO AN EMOTION AND DESIRE, HUMANS ARE COMPELLED TO DO SOMETHING - LIKE MAKE PURCHASES. CONSUMERS COULD MAKE BETTER DECISIONS AT THESE MOMENTS IF THE PRODUCT ITSELF, NOT THE ADVERTISERS, WOULD BE ABLE TO MAKE BOTH A CONVINCING RATIONAL ARGUMENT AND AN EMOTIONAL CONNECTION.
  8. 8. Personality // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 www.matteocibicstudio.com/ www.alessi.com/ www.mobilefun.co.uk/ 8 ONE WAY TO CREATE THAT EMOTIONAL CONNECTION IS TO BRING ANTHROPOMORPHISM (HUMAN-LIKE) QUALITIES TO THE FORM AND INTERACTION OF THE PRODUCTS WE DEVELOP, DESIGN AND MARKET. MAKING SOMETHING APPEAR HUMAN WHEN IT IS CLEARLY NOT APPEALS TO OUR BASE SENSE OF ATTRACTION TOWARDS OTHER PEOPLE AND OBJECTS.
  9. 9. Rocky will be president some day. I love Rocky! That’s ridiculous, grow up. J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 9 Personality // THIS ISN’T NEW - WE’VE JUST FORGOTTEN. CHILDREN MAKE FRIENDS WITH OBJECTS, ACT IF THEY ARE ALIVE AND SUBSCRIBE PERSONALITIES. BUT AS ADULTS WE REJECT AND DISCOURAGE THIS NOTION AND PLAYFUL BEHAVIOUR. LET’S BRING BACK OUR INNER CHILD AND OUR MAKE-BELIEVE FRIENDS. J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 9 Personality //
  10. 10. J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 10 Image Credit: flickr/JIMWIChPersonality // DID YOU KNOW THAT THE TENDENCY TO SPOT HIDDEN FACES IN RANDOM PATTERNS HAS A NAME — PAREIDOLIA — AND IT'S THE SUBJECT OF SOME NEW RESEARCH OUT OF JAPAN, WHICH FOUND THAT NEUROTIC TYPES ARE MORE LIKELY TO SEE, SAY, A MENACING FACE IN A STAPLER.
  11. 11. Personality // Project by Simone Rebaudengo and Haque Design Research J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 11 THE IDEA OF PROJECTING ANTHROPOMORPHISM THROUGH THE INTERACTION WITH A PRODUCT IS RELATIVELY NEW AND EXPLORED MAINLY IN THE ACADEMIC AND NON-COMMERCIAL SETTINGS. THIS IS BRAD THE TOASTER A PROJECT BY SIMONE REBAUDENGO AND THE HAGUE DESIGN RESEARCH.
  12. 12. J F Grossen // Social Media Week / London // The Desirability of Connected Products September 17, 2015 12 Personality // (c) Inter IKEA Systems B. V. 2002 J F Grossen // Winter 2016 12 IT CAN EASILY BE VERY MUCH A PART OF THE COMMERCIAL REALITY. IKEA IS A BRAND THAT IS WELL-POSITIONED TO BRING A VOICE TO THEIR PRODUCTS - AS MANY OF THEM ARE POPULAR SWEDISH MEN AND WOMEN NAMES. WATCH THIS VIDEO FROM 2002 - DIRECTED BY SPIKE JONZE.
  13. 13. J F Grossen // Social Media Week / London // The Desirability of Connected Products September 17, 2015 13 Personality // (c) Inter IKEA Systems B. V. 2002 J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 13
  14. 14. Technology // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 14 A VARIETY OF TECHNOLOGIES WILL BE EMPLOYED TO CREATE A SUSTAINED DIALOGUE AND INTIMACY BETWEEN PERSON AND PRODUCT.
  15. 15. J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 15 Personality // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 15 Technology // We’re not talking about re-building products, like a chair or a range-top espresso brewer with a brain - this is not the formal application of AI (Artificial Intelligence). This is about how we can create a perceived agency and dialog for objects or products with the technologies and data we have at our disposal now. More magic through technology.
  16. 16. J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 16 Personality // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 16 Technology // Mobile devices are the link and the communication tools between product and person and the conduit to the REAL brain of the operations in the cloud.
  17. 17. J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 17 Personality // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 17 Technology // There is no one retail technology that will create the perfect environment for dialogue to happen between products and consumers. Wifi gives ubiquitous connections to data and between objects, Beacons broadcast messages based on proximity and triggers and QR code scanning or NFC allows for on-demand information and a more physical interaction with a product. CONNECT (WIFI) TAP ( NFC) SCAN (CODES) BROADCAST (BEACONS)
  18. 18. J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 18 Personality // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 18 Technology // The channels for communication between product and person are the same as we consider today for P2P. The more natural and common the interactions, the more believable the stories told, convincing the sell is and more real the relationship can appear. MESSAGES EMAIL NOTIFICATIONS
  19. 19. J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 19 Personality // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 19 Technology // LITTLE DATA All the information necessary to make an object sound like it really knows you exists today. Its the combination of patterns and preferences of the masses through BIG DATA combined with what each individual desires, through LITTLE DATA from their Facebook profile, Pinterest Pins, dating site profiles, Swarm check-ins, etc.
  20. 20. J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 20 Personality // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 20 Technology // I’d go perfect in the new office you’re planning. I’m just like the table you pinned last week. I like the pictures you tweeted of your kids. I’m scratch resistant You know me so well. The product will be able to create a unique story that is more tailored to a conversation with an individual and not a group or audience or a demographic. Its the new holy grail of target marketing. On a person to product level.
  21. 21. Shopping // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 21 SHOPPING WILL BE A NEW DYNAMIC SOCIAL EXPERIENCE THROUGH A SERIES OF PERSONAL CONVERSATIONS IN THE AISLES.
  22. 22. Shopping // Hej! J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 22 Today, merchandising its about the layout of the store, the presentation of the product, the messaging and signage - supported by the knowledge of the employees.  Tomorrow, it will include where and how the product introduces itself to the customer, the stories it tells and the manner in which it convinces each shopper to take it home. What might these new shopping experiences look like after we’ve enabled our products to have a voice?
  23. 23. Shopping // THE PERFECT FAMILY (RECOMMENDATIONS) I’m glad you decided to take me home. J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 23 Today, recommendations are based on shoppers purchase history, search and browse activities and dwell time. Tomorrow, the products themselves will make suggestions on what of their ‘friends’ or ‘family’ work best for you culling the furniture designers expertise, the retailers merchandising knowledge and hard-coded product relationships.
  24. 24. Shopping // THE PERFECT FAMILY (RECOMMENDATIONS) J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 24 I’d also like to introduce you to some other products in my family. Today, recommendations are based on shoppers purchase history, search and browse activities and dwell time. Tomorrow, the products themselves will make suggestions on what of their ‘friends’ or ‘family’ work best for you culling the furniture designers expertise, the retailers merchandising knowledge and hard-coded product relationships.
  25. 25. Shopping // THE PERFECT FAMILY (RECOMMENDATIONS) J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 25 Today, recommendations are based on shoppers purchase history, search and browse activities and dwell time. Tomorrow, the products themselves will make suggestions on what of their ‘friends’ or ‘family’ work best for you culling the furniture designers expertise, the retailers merchandising knowledge and hard-coded product relationships. Hej! Hej!
  26. 26. Shopping // THE PERFECT FAMILY (RECOMMENDATIONS) J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 26 We belong together from day we were born at the factory. Today, recommendations are based on shoppers purchase history, search and browse activities and dwell time. Tomorrow, the products themselves will make suggestions on what of their ‘friends’ or ‘family’ work best for you culling the furniture designers expertise, the retailers merchandising knowledge and hard-coded product relationships.
  27. 27. Shopping // THE JEALOUS CHAIR (COMPARISON) J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 27 I noticed you staring at me on the internet Today, comparison shopping is side-by-side on features and functionality. Tomorrow, the products make their own argument on why it ‘thinks’ its better than the other. This argument would be based on what the shopped cares for most - price, durability, etc. Ability to make a rational argument about worth makes it desirable. Me too.
  28. 28. Shopping // THE JEALOUS CHAIR (COMPARISON) J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 28 Are you looking at that other chair? Today, comparison shopping is side-by-side on features and functionality. Tomorrow, the products make their own argument on why it ‘thinks’ its better than the other. This argument would be based on what the shopped cares for most - price, durability, etc. Ability to make a rational argument about worth makes it desirable.
  29. 29. Shopping // THE JEALOUS CHAIR (COMPARISON) J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 29 My colour fits your living room much better Today, comparison shopping is side-by-side on features and functionality. Tomorrow, the products make their own argument on why it ‘thinks’ its better than the other. This argument would be based on what the shopped cares for most - price, durability, etc. Ability to make a rational argument about worth makes it desirable. I don’t think so..
  30. 30. Shopping // THE JEALOUS CHAIR (COMPARISON) J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 30 …and I’m way more comfortable. Sit on me. Today, comparison shopping is side-by-side on features and functionality. Tomorrow, the products make their own argument on why it ‘thinks’ its better than the other. This argument would be based on what the shopped cares for most - price, durability, etc. Ability to make a rational argument about worth makes it desirable. No, me!
  31. 31. Shopping // THE JEALOUS CHAIR (COMPARISON) J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 31 I’ll give you 20% if you buy me right now. Today, comparison shopping is side-by-side on features and functionality. Tomorrow, the products make their own argument on why it ‘thinks’ its better than the other. This argument would be based on what the shopped cares for most - price, durability, etc. Ability to make a rational argument about worth makes it desirable. Jerk.
  32. 32. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 32 MEANINGFUL RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN PRODUCTS AND PEOPLE REQUIRE A MORE FAMILIAR AND HUMAN METHOD OF MATCH-MAKING.
  33. 33. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 33 IF OUR PRODUCTS INTERACT WITH US LIKE HUMANS, SHOULDN’T WE USE A DIFFERENT METHOD OF SEARCHING FOR THE RIGHT ONE TO BECOME PART OF YOUR LIFE? WE CAN LOOK TO MATCH-MAKING AND DATING SITES FOR THE WAYS TO FIND PERFECT MATES BASED ON A NUMBER OF PREFERENTIAL, EMOTIONAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL COMPARISONS AND COMPONENTS.
  34. 34. Match-making // eHarmony Concept Ad from Nathan K. Boyd J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 34 THERE ARE TWO MAIN STYLES OF DATING SERVICES ONLINE TODAY THAT COULD BE APPLIED TO MATCHING THE RIGHT PRODUCT WITH THE RIGHT PERSON. THE FIRST IS A MORE TRADITIONAL WAY THAT THE DATING INDUSTRY HAS OFFERED SUCCESSFULLY FOR YEARS THROUGH PROFILE MATCHING WITH MOST OF THE CONTROL BEING IN THE LOVE-SEEKERS HANDS.
  35. 35. Jay man chair 11217 Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 35
  36. 36. Likes Beer Likes to Party Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 36
  37. 37. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 37
  38. 38. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 38 Lonely Sculpture (2014) from Tully Arnot THE SECOND IS ADDRESSING AN EMERGING WAY OF DATING DECISION-MAKING THAT DEPENDS ON INTUITION OF THE LOVE OR LUST-SEEKER AND TRUST IN THAT THE ‘SYSTEM’ AND AUTOMATION WILL MAKE THE BEST JUDGEMENT FOR HIM/HER.
  39. 39. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 39 THIS TYPE OF MATCHMAKING IS BEING PLAYING OUT IN THE RETAIL/FASHION WORLD. THERE ARE SEVERAL APPLICATIONS THAT DIRECTLY LIFT THE TINDER MODEL OF ‘SWIPE LEFT TO THROW AWAY - SWIPE RIGHT TO KEEP’ AND APPLYING THAT GUT REACTION IN THE DISCOVERY MOMENT.
  40. 40. Match-making //Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 40
  41. 41. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 41 Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 41
  42. 42. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 42 Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 42
  43. 43. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 43 IMAGINE IF YOU ‘LIKE’ A PRODUCT AND IT IMMEDIATELY SENDS YOU A MESSAGE OR WHEN YOU ARRIVE IN THE STORE IT GREETS YOU AND ASKS YOU TO COME MEET THEM IN THE DINING ROOM SECTION.
  44. 44. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 44
  45. 45. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 45
  46. 46. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 46
  47. 47. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 47
  48. 48. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 48
  49. 49. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 49
  50. 50. Match-making // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 50 THIS ALSO ADDRESSES AN ONGOING CHALLENGE FOR MANY RETAILERS OF HOW TO MAKE THE PHYSICAL STORE MORE MEANINGFUL AND THE EXPERIENCE MORE IMMERSIVE.
  51. 51. Conclusion // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 51 Image Credit: Gwenael Piaser J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 51 Conclusion // LET’S ASSUME WE CONTINUE DOWN THIS ‘BETTER LIVING THROUGH HUMANISED TECHNOLOGY’ PATH - IT’S GOING TO NEED RE-ORIENTED TEAMS TO BRING IT TO LIFE. WE’LL NEED TECHNOLOGISTS TO CREATE THE CODE TO MAKE THE INTERACTION SEEM AUTOMATIC AND NATURAL, NOT FORCED AND ROBOTIC.
  52. 52. Conclusion // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 52 Image Credit: Gwenael Piaser J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 52 Conclusion // WE’LL NEED DESIGNERS, WRITERS AND MARKETERS TO BRING VOICE TO THESE PRODUCTS THAT FEELS AUTHENTIC, NOT CREEPY. NOT JUST PARROTING THE GLOBAL BRAND MESSAGES AS A CHORUS, BUT CREATING UNIQUE SINGLE VOICES OF THE BRAND WITH EACH PRODUCT.
  53. 53. Conclusion // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 53 Image Credit: Mike Mitchell J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 53 Conclusion // AND WE’LL PROBABLY NEED TO INCLUDE A FEW NEW PLAYERS ON OUR TEAM - FROM SOCIOLOGISTS TO DATING COACHES AND THERAPISTS WHO STUDY AND SUPPORT THESE RELATIONSHIPS. THEIR OBSERVATIONS AND INSIGHTS CAN BE ESSENTIAL IN MAKING PRODUCTS BETTER. WHERE DO WE START?
  54. 54. Where do we start? // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 54 PROMOTE PRODUCT MONOGAMY / GAIN LOYALTY WITH NEW CUSTOMER SERVICES THAT HELP TO CELEBRATE POSITIVE MOMENTS TOGETHER AND BY OFFERING SUPPORT IN CHALLENGING TIMES.
  55. 55. Where do we start? // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 55 Congrats! You’ve sat on me 125,000 times in the past 10 years. Text HELPME to receive 25% off repair services. Where do we start? // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 55 Image Credit: Kim Yakota
  56. 56. Where do we start? // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 56 BUILD POLYAMOROUS SHOPPING EXPERIENCES / CREATE NEW SHOPPING ENVIRONMENTS AND EVENTS THAT ENCOURAGE EXPLORATION, ENGAGEMENT AND CONVERSATION WITH A WIDE RANGE OF PRODUCTS.
  57. 57. Where do we start? // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 57 Speed-dating for Kitchen Tables Wednesday 20:00 Oxford Street Image Credit: AGATON STROM FOR THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
  58. 58. Introduction // 58J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 Image Credit: flickr/Steve Rhodes @jfgrossen + #frogdesign + #desirabilityofproducts
  59. 59. References // J F Grossen // The Desirability of Connected Products Winter 2016 59 Tina Kiesler and Sara Kiesler, Authors of My pet rock and me: An experimental exploration of the self extension concept. Advances in Consumer Research / http://www.wisegeek.org/what-is-the-difference-between-anthropomorphism-and-personification.htm NYMAG / Neurotic People See Faces in Things  / http://nymag.com/scienceofus/2015/07/neurotic-people-see-faces-in-things.html The Seduction of the Interface: Merchandising in Interactive Product Design, Christopher Fahey / http://cdn.oreillystatic.com/en/assets/1/ event/16/The%20Seduction%20of%20the%20Interface_%20Merchandising%20in%20Interactive%20Product%20Design %20Presentation.pdf From Seduction to Fulfillment: The Use of Anthropomorphic Form in Design; Carl DiSalvo, Francine Gemperle - School of Design, Institute For Complex Engineered Systems, Carnegie Mellon University Psychology Today / How Emotions Influence How We Buy / https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/inside-the-consumer-mind/201302/how- emotions-influence-what-we-buy

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