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We now live in a world where digital has
become the most important channel in
people’s lives and is a central driver of our
culture. New technologies are being invented,
but just as important, existing technology
is evolving to be more user-centric and
dynamic than ever before, promoting instant
gratification and relevance. All of these
changes are an attempt to build an even
tighter connection between what’s digital
and human, proactively meeting user needs
and blurring the lines between on- and
offline experiences.
With this continuous evolution, technology has
quickly become the key driver of profitability
and market differentiation in every industry.
We’re in an accelerated digital world, where
you need to always be solving for your future.
If you solve only for today you’re going to have
to solve for today again tomorrow. Because of
this, the gap between brands who successfully
unlock the key to digital success and the
laggards who struggle to keep up continues
to grow, creating an even greater sense of
urgency to innovate.
LET’S TAKE A LOOK AT THE KEY TRENDS
THAT ARE SHAPING THE DIGITAL FRONTIER
IN 2016 AND BEYOND.
Laura Markewicz, VP of Digital Strategy
Ceara Milligan, Digital Strategist
TOP 10 DIGITAL MARKETING TRENDS OF 2016
1
THE INTERNET
OF THINGS
WILL PAVE
NEW GROUND
L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
WHAT IT MEANS
Nearly every experience has the potential to become digitized as everyday
objects and appliances become “smart.” In the near future, our homes, vehicles,
appliances, accessories, and other devices will cultivate a resilient contextual
awareness of each other within an ecosystem. However, the Internet of Things
(IoT) is still currently fragmented, as devices don’t always correspond seamlessly.
In 2016, we will see a major shift toward a deeper connection of intelligent
products, bridging the gap between the digital and physical worlds and providing
more real-life digital experiences.
HOW IT’S BEING USED
According to Accenture, the IoT is becoming a force that is driving innovation and
new opportunities by bringing everyday objects, people, and activities into the
digital realm. For example, the Nest Thermostat is a home device that is working
to bridge the gap between people’s home appliances and mobile devices, allowing
them to be connected to their home no matter where they are. Leading companies
are making comparable revolutions within their enterprises by digitizing their
employees, processes, products, and services.
WHY IT MATTERS
According to Forbes contributor Jacob Morgan, analysts estimate that there
will be nearly 26 billion devices within the IoT by 2020. With all of these
hyper-connected devices, marketers will not only have a treasure trove of data,
they’ll have always-on access to those that supply that data. This brings new
opportunities for interaction as smart devices can have the comprehension to know
someone’s personal preferences and adjust them by voice command – or by simply
approaching and entering a room.
2
WE ARE NOW
ENTERING
THE OUTCOME
ECONOMY
WHAT IT MEANS
Ted Levitt, former Harvard Business Review editor and a professor at Harvard
Business School, once stated, “People don’t want to buy drills; they want to buy
holes.” This is what’s referred to as the Outcome Economy, which Accenture
defines as the ability of companies to create value by delivering solutions to
customers that will turn into quantifiable results. As leading brands come face-
to-face with the IoT, they are finding opportunities to implant hardware and
sensors into their digital toolboxes. They are using these highly connected tools
and objects to give customers what they really want: not just more products or
services, but more meaningful outcomes – or significant solutions to problems.
HOW IT’S BEING USED
It is certainly an art to construct the most creative, efficient ways to sell the
intangible benefits rather than the tangible goods or services. An example
provided by PR Newswire is Medisafe, a healthcare company that designed a
free mobile application that detects when patients take medications and sends
reminders to them when they forget. Thus, the outcome is that the patient is
taking the medication the right way at the right time, and they can proceed to
live a healthier life.
WHY IT MATTERS
According to an Edelman survey, nearly two-thirds (66%) of consumers feel that
their relationships with brands are one-sided, with them as the sole contributors
and brands as the sole beneficiaries. Brands are taking note of this sentiment
and moving forward with ways to improve consumer perception. Getting ahead
and staying on top is no longer about selling things; it’s about selling outcomes,
generating experiences, and forming cherished connections.
L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
3
VIRTUAL
REALITY
WILL OPEN A
WHOLE NEW
WORLD TO
BRANDS AND
CUSTOMERS
WHAT IT MEANS
Virtual reality (VR) gives brands the opportunity to give their customers the
closest-to-life experience they can get from a product, service, or place without
physically being there. As our virtual and physical worlds overlap, VR presents
marketers with the ultimate way to engage customers. Rather than considering
customers as passive viewers and receivers of images and messages, brands
implementing VR strategies view them as active players in the fabrication of
campaigns, products, and programs, with the purpose of strengthening their
affiliation with the brand.
HOW IT’S BEING USEDD
One of the biggest keys to marketing is crafting an immersive experience that
has multisensory interaction, allowing users to physically experience the brand
by playing a part in its story. For example, Marriott Hotels offers newly married
couples virtual honeymoon experiences before they book their dream trip. Lexus
lets people configure the new NX to their needs and take it for a virtual test drive.
And with live streaming content from a game, concert, event, or another place,
people can feel like they’re at the location no matter where they are in the world.
In 2016, more and more brands will find a valuable application for their customer
interactions, eliminating barriers like distance and cost.
WHY IT MATTERS
A major value of VR is that it is an interactive method that generates empathetic
brand storytelling. Customers can “step inside” a brand’s storybook and endure a
seemingly authentic experience in a seemingly authentic place. With the ability to
tell 360-degree, 3D stories, brands will be able to engage with their audiences in
very authentic ways.
L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
4
ARTIFICIAL
INTELLIGENCE-
DRIVEN
TECHNOLOGIES
WILL FIND
REAL-WORLD
APPLICATION
WHAT IT MEANS
Artificial intelligence (AI) software is programmed to be able to get to know their
surroundings in knowledgeable and meaningful ways. AI will soon become an
accepted aspect of daily life, as digital entities will be able to compute mass amounts
of data and extract meaning from them by way of intricate algorithms. These self-
teaching agents have the ability to predict what users are looking for with little to no
effort on either party’s end.
HOW IT’S BEING USEDD
iPhone users are well aware of Siri, the anthropoid personal assistant. However,
according to Sarah Perez, a writer at TechCruch, “Siri can only do what it has been
programmed to do [by its engineers], and when it doesn’t know an answer, it directs
users to the web.” Since the inception of Siri, the inventors have begun a new game-
changing project named Viv, also known as “The Global Brain.” Viv is a prevailing
model of IA that is able to “learn” about its users and their individual surroundings
– and actually remember them. Viv can analyze language and complex queries,
connecting a mass of third-party sources of information together in order to answer
users’ questions, no matter how complex. For example, Viv will be able to find the
best flight for a user based on his or her destination and personal preferences
within minutes.
WHY IT MATTERS
Advanced AI programs will be able to teach themselves as if they had a human brain,
resulting in virtually limitless capabilities. This year, AI agents will be further tested
in projects throughout several industries, including autonomous vehicles, smart home
appliances, and other devices. AI engineers believe that over time, their creations
will be able to leverage users’ personal preferences and a vast web of connections to
answer almost any query and perform almost any task.
L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
5
T-COMMERCE
WILL CHANGE
THE WAY WE
CONSUME
MEDIA
THROUGH THE
CUSTOMER
JOURNEY
WHAT IT MEANS
T-commerce is the direct selling and buying of products through television. In
2015, TV saw an increased adoption as a tool used by consumers to search the
Internet through digital media players such as Roku, Google Chromecast, and
Amazon Fire TV. And technology giant Apple’s latest Apple TV entertainment
device lets viewers buy products directly through their TV from the comfort of their
living room. In 2016, marketers will further test whether or not consumers will
embrace shopping through the magic of their TV screen.
HOW IT’S BEING USED
Many brands are latching onto t-commerce technology. For example, the shopping
website Gilt designed an Apple TV app that allows consumers to explore products,
add items to their cart, and buy directly through their television. The media
technology company Delivery Agent also offers its ShopTV® t-commerce technology
for many channels on Samsung and Sony Smart TVs.
WHY IT MATTERS
Through t-commerce, an entirely new shopping outlet will be accessible to digital
consumers. And as sales and subscriptions of digital media players skyrocket, the
shift away from cable television in America is accelerating at lightning speed. This
change speaks volumes, as the channels through which we consume media are
shaping our future. Consumers will be able to purchase an article of clothing worn
by a character from their favorite show or buy products as ads are being displayed
on their TV screens — without even needing to reach for his or her smartphone,
tablet, or laptop.
L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
6
THE
NOTION OF
PRIVACY VS.
PREVALENCE
WILL
STABILIZE
WHAT IT MEANS
Today’s consumers are more willing than ever to provide (and store) personal
(and sometimes sensitive) information in order to be served the most individually
relevant content and experiences, as well as other things of value such as
convenience, simplicity and discounts. The transition from having a more
hypersensitive safeguarded mindset to being more permissive with personal
records provides marketers with proof that consumers have embedded trust in
the brands with which they interact and from which they buy.
HOW IT’S BEING USED
Digital business technologies are becoming more influential as consumers are
granting them access to private data. For example, PayPal is making strides in
integrating its comprehensible online payment method with retailers and banks
so users can quickly go through the checkout process. Another example is the
financial service platform Mint, who collects all bank accounts of an individual
and monitors where and when money is spent so they can provide advice for users
to better manage their funds.
WHY IT MATTERS
For both consumers and businesses, the values and benefits of collecting this
type of data outweigh the disadvantages. However, marketers must tread lightly as
legislation will continue to tackle the issue of privacy, increasing the restrictions
on data collection by companies. All the while, brands need to be cautious not
to infringe on customers’ privacy at the cost of potentially losing their trust and
ultimately losing them as customers.
L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
7
LOCATION-
BASED
TECHNOLOGY
WILL REACH
A TIPPING
POINT
WHAT IT MEANS
With the extensive volume of user data available and advancements in location-
based tools, marketers are better enabled to reach consumers at the perfect
moments based on their physical coordinates and connect them with contextually
relevant and timely messages in order to persuade them to take action or make
a purchase. In 2016, companies will further leverage this technology for a more
contextualized experience, including relevant discounts, directions, facts, and
other types of valuable content.
HOW IT’S BEING USED
Brands must pay close attention and adapt to the customers’ current situation in
order to be considered a central element within their intimate range. For example,
an alert from a user’s phone could notify her that the dress she had in her online
shopping cart is available and ready to be tried on and purchased at the brick-and-
mortar store a block away.
WHY IT MATTERS
Consumers are progressively accepting the fact that their physical whereabouts are
being used so they can get the most out of their brand experiences. By uncovering
the imperative moments of truth that can make or break an interaction, marketers
can profit from tapping into a user’s location and personal data to offer the most
relevant, engaging, and personal experience possible.
L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
8
USER
EXPERIENCE
WILL BECOME
MORE
AMBIENT AND
PERSONALIZED
L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
WHAT IT MEANS
Marketing technology journalist and expert Mike Elgan explains ambient user
experience as “information that just appears, scrolls by and then vanishes, mostly
in the cognitive background. It will just be there with us all the time.” Elgan
claims people don’t think in terms of “context,” but rather in how the experience
meshes into their current situation. Through ambient intelligence, devices and
software will analyze and present information in such a way that it will feel like a
natural extension of people’s external environments.
HOW IT’S BEING USED
New developments are taking place in the technology world that will allow brands
to enhance reality and improve usability for their audiences. Project Tango is a
Google project that allows a mobile device to understand precise position and
orientation via custom sensors, providing real-time information about the motion
and location of a device. Project Tango, as well as other comparative technologies,
enables developers to employ digital indoor wayfinding, a convenient feature that
can be used in hospitals, museums, libraries, and other buildings for people to
find their way to an exact destination.
WHY IT MATTERS
Consumers expect an experience that goes far beyond traditional marketing and
digital engagement maneuvers. Devices and software will analyze and present
information in such a way that it will feel like a natural extension of people’s
external environments. Marketers who take advantage of this emerging technology
will see increased customer fulfillment, along with more accurate, personally
relevant and reliable experiences.
9
CUSTOMERS
WILL PREFER
(AND EXPECT)
SUPER-
SERVICE OVER
TRADITIONAL
CUSTOMER
SERVICE
WHAT IT MEANS
Super-service is the new wave of customer service, where responsibility will
shift to the provider to service the customer like a relatable, empathetic human
being. This not only involves providing support that far surpasses customer
expectations, it’s enabling them to help themselves through self-service tools
and automation. This dual approach aims to create satisfying experiences for all
types of consumers, building brand trust and loyalty.
HOW IT’S BEING USEDD
Amazon is implementing an anticipatory shipping feature that uses order
histories to predict what a customer will need, then shipping the items to
the nearest warehouse and distribution center before they even make the
purchase, thus ensuring the quickest delivery possible. Dollar Shave Club is
another top example: the startup lets customers choose the type of razors and
shaving products they want and a curated box filled with products that fit their
personal preferences, budget, time of year, and other factors, is sent to them.
If an incorrect product is delivered or if the package is late for any reason, the
company will send a free “sorry” basket with shaving cream and a T-shirt.
WHY IT MATTERS
According to the 2015 Aspect Consumer Experience Survey, 76% of consumers
say they view customer service as the true test of how much a company values
them. Companies that don’t make super-service a critical part of their business
model or treat customers as real people are less likely to retain or grow their
customer base; customers will stick with the brands that treat them with
empathy, deliver the most relevant products or services, respond to inquiries in
a personal manner, and resolve issues quickly If not instantaneously.
L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
10
THE SHARING
ECONOMY WILL
CONTINUE TO
CREATE
OPPORTUNITIES
FOR BRANDS
TO SHIFT THE
HUMAN
NETWORK
WHAT IT MEANS
The Sharing Economy fosters collaborative consumption across all types of
trades, including transportation, hospitality, healthcare, finance and personal
services. This new type of marketplace will continue to gain traction in
the coming year, with new startups emerging and current business models
transforming to become more accessible, convenient, and instinctive for users.
HOW IT’S BEING USED
Companies like Lyft, Uber, Postmates, Airbnb, TaskRabbit, and Rover.com
have produced internet-based business models that utilize shared human and
physical resources to deliver goods and services without the need to hire many
or any employees. Consumers are exponentially embracing these services and
involving them across every aspect of their lives. Aside from consumers, other
businesses are being targeted and catching on to the movement. For instance,
according to Business.com, in 2015, Uber, Indiegogo, and Airbnb, among
others, launched new mobile apps designed for businesses, making it easier to
distinguish personal vs. professional expenditures.
WHY IT MATTERS
The Sharing Economy is writing the new game plan for how industries
are rapidly evolving and how consumers are leaning in to take part in the
movement. Brands that effectively contribute to the Sharing Economy, engage
with their customers regularly and leverage insights to identify ways of providing
a more seamless experience, thereby increasing brand sentiment over time. This
allows them to boost their positioning and equity and increase efficiencies while
simultaneously decreasing costs.
L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
Marketers and consumers will continue
to encounter a myriad of radical digital
revolutions in 2016 and beyond. Technologies
are becoming more encompassing as quickly as
they’re becoming more transparent, resulting
in stronger trust and connections between
brands and people. Brands need to stay atop
of all the incredible things happening in the
digital arena and carefully evaluate what
makes sense for them and their customers.
J A N U A R Y 2 0 1 6
M I LW A U K E E C H I C A G O N E W Y O R K N E W J E R S E Y
W W W. L A U G H L I N . C O M | @ L A U G H L I N A G E N C Y |
HERE’S TO AN INCREDIBLE 2016
ONE
•	 Accenture - http://techtrends.accenture.com/us-en/business-technology-trends-
report.html
•	 Forbes - http://www.forbes.com/sites/jacobmorgan/2014/05/13/simple-
explanation-internet-things-that-anyone-can-understand
TWO
•	 Accenture - http://techtrends.accenture.com/us-en/business-technology-trends-
report.html
•	 CNET - http://www.cnet.com/pictures/amazon-prime-now-a-peek-inside-the-
manhattan-warehouse/
•	 PR Newswire - http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/medisafe-study-shows-
the-positive-impact-of-patient-caregiver-connections-on-medication-adherence-
rates-300181771.html
•	 TrendWatching - http://trendwatching.com/x/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/2015-
03-CURRENCIES-OF-CHANGE.pdf
THREE
•	 AdAge - http://adage.com/article/digitalnext/virtual-reality-frontier-retail/300061/
•	 Econsultancy - https://econsultancy.com/blog/66587-10-ways-marketers-can-use-
virtual-reality-right-now/
•	 Fortune - http://fortune.com/2015/09/09/marriott-virtual-reality/
•	 Rewind - http://rewind.co/portfolio/lexus/
FOUR
•	 Esquire - http://www.esquire.com/lifestyle/a34630/viv-artificial-
intelligence-0515/
•	 Forbes - http://www.forbes.com/sites/micahsolomon/2015/12/17/ibms-watson-ai-
is-poised-to-transform-customer-service-and-hospitality/#2715e4857a0b73243
9bf1b13
•	 TechCrunch - http://techcrunch.com/2015/02/20/viv-built-by-siris-creators-
scores-12-5-million-for-an-ai-technology-that-can-teach-itself
•	 Wired - http://www.wired.com/2014/08/viv/
•	 Wired - http://www.wired.com/2015/11/amazon-echo-gift/
FIVE
•	 AdAge - http://adage.com/article/digital/youtube-shopping-ads-akin-google-
search-ads-pre-rolls/300635/
•	 Businesswire - http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160106005640/en/
Delivery-Agent-ShopTV%C2%AE-Platform-Showcased-Partners-CES
•	 Delivery Agent - http://www.deliveryagent.com/
•	 eMarketer - http://www.emarketer.com/Article/Americans-Cutting-Cable-TV-Cord-
Increasing-Pace/1013327
•	 Fortune - http://fortune.com/2015/09/09/apple-tv-ecommerce/
SIX
•	 Gigya - http://www.gigya.com/blog/infographic-pp-2015/
•	 TrendMicro - http://www.trendmicro.com/vinfo/us/security/news/online-privacy/
data-privacy-day-why-data-privacy-is-important
SEVEN
•	 Adweek - http://www.adweek.com/news/technology/4-location-based-marketing-
tactics-are-working-159234
•	 eMarketer - http://www.emarketer.com/Article/Mobile-Location-Based-Ads-Must-
Hit-Audience-Spot-On/1012825
•	 Marketing Land - http://marketingland.com/four-key-mobile-location-based-
trends-2016-158860
•	 xAd - http://www.xad.com/press-releases/nearly-80-of-marketers-around-the-
world-use-location-targeting-for-mobile-ad-campaigns/
EIGHT
•	 Computerworld - http://www.computerworld.com/article/2485982/social-media/
here-comes-the-age-of-ambient-everything.html
•	 Google - https://www.google.com/atap/project-tango/
•	 INMA - http://www.inma.org/blogs/mobile-tablets/post.cfm/ambient-user-
experience-about-to-change-everything
•	 Tech Radar - http://www.techradar.com/us/news/world-of-tech/future-tech/10-
hugely-important-it-trends-for-2016-1308808
NINE
•	 Dollar Shave Club - http://www.dollarshaveclub.com/
•	 Forbes - http://www.forbes.com/sites/onmarketing/2014/01/28/why-amazons-
anticipatory-shipping-is-pure-genius/#2715e4857a0b635ab9922fac
•	 Help Scout - http://www.helpscout.net/customer-loyalty/
•	 TechCrunch - http://techcrunch.com/2014/01/18/amazon-pre-ships/
TEN
•	 Brandthropologie - http://brandthropologie.com/2016-trends-report/
•	 Business.com - http://www.business.com/technology/whats-next-for-the-sharing-
economy-in-2016/
•	 PwC - https://www.pwc.com/us/en/technology/publications/assets/pwc-consumer-
intelligence-series-the-sharing-economy.pdf
S O U R C E S

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LCTop10DigitalTrends-FINAL-Report

  • 1.
  • 2. We now live in a world where digital has become the most important channel in people’s lives and is a central driver of our culture. New technologies are being invented, but just as important, existing technology is evolving to be more user-centric and dynamic than ever before, promoting instant gratification and relevance. All of these changes are an attempt to build an even tighter connection between what’s digital and human, proactively meeting user needs and blurring the lines between on- and offline experiences. With this continuous evolution, technology has quickly become the key driver of profitability and market differentiation in every industry. We’re in an accelerated digital world, where you need to always be solving for your future. If you solve only for today you’re going to have to solve for today again tomorrow. Because of this, the gap between brands who successfully unlock the key to digital success and the laggards who struggle to keep up continues to grow, creating an even greater sense of urgency to innovate. LET’S TAKE A LOOK AT THE KEY TRENDS THAT ARE SHAPING THE DIGITAL FRONTIER IN 2016 AND BEYOND. Laura Markewicz, VP of Digital Strategy Ceara Milligan, Digital Strategist TOP 10 DIGITAL MARKETING TRENDS OF 2016
  • 3. 1 THE INTERNET OF THINGS WILL PAVE NEW GROUND L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6 WHAT IT MEANS Nearly every experience has the potential to become digitized as everyday objects and appliances become “smart.” In the near future, our homes, vehicles, appliances, accessories, and other devices will cultivate a resilient contextual awareness of each other within an ecosystem. However, the Internet of Things (IoT) is still currently fragmented, as devices don’t always correspond seamlessly. In 2016, we will see a major shift toward a deeper connection of intelligent products, bridging the gap between the digital and physical worlds and providing more real-life digital experiences. HOW IT’S BEING USED According to Accenture, the IoT is becoming a force that is driving innovation and new opportunities by bringing everyday objects, people, and activities into the digital realm. For example, the Nest Thermostat is a home device that is working to bridge the gap between people’s home appliances and mobile devices, allowing them to be connected to their home no matter where they are. Leading companies are making comparable revolutions within their enterprises by digitizing their employees, processes, products, and services. WHY IT MATTERS According to Forbes contributor Jacob Morgan, analysts estimate that there will be nearly 26 billion devices within the IoT by 2020. With all of these hyper-connected devices, marketers will not only have a treasure trove of data, they’ll have always-on access to those that supply that data. This brings new opportunities for interaction as smart devices can have the comprehension to know someone’s personal preferences and adjust them by voice command – or by simply approaching and entering a room.
  • 4. 2 WE ARE NOW ENTERING THE OUTCOME ECONOMY WHAT IT MEANS Ted Levitt, former Harvard Business Review editor and a professor at Harvard Business School, once stated, “People don’t want to buy drills; they want to buy holes.” This is what’s referred to as the Outcome Economy, which Accenture defines as the ability of companies to create value by delivering solutions to customers that will turn into quantifiable results. As leading brands come face- to-face with the IoT, they are finding opportunities to implant hardware and sensors into their digital toolboxes. They are using these highly connected tools and objects to give customers what they really want: not just more products or services, but more meaningful outcomes – or significant solutions to problems. HOW IT’S BEING USED It is certainly an art to construct the most creative, efficient ways to sell the intangible benefits rather than the tangible goods or services. An example provided by PR Newswire is Medisafe, a healthcare company that designed a free mobile application that detects when patients take medications and sends reminders to them when they forget. Thus, the outcome is that the patient is taking the medication the right way at the right time, and they can proceed to live a healthier life. WHY IT MATTERS According to an Edelman survey, nearly two-thirds (66%) of consumers feel that their relationships with brands are one-sided, with them as the sole contributors and brands as the sole beneficiaries. Brands are taking note of this sentiment and moving forward with ways to improve consumer perception. Getting ahead and staying on top is no longer about selling things; it’s about selling outcomes, generating experiences, and forming cherished connections. L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
  • 5. 3 VIRTUAL REALITY WILL OPEN A WHOLE NEW WORLD TO BRANDS AND CUSTOMERS WHAT IT MEANS Virtual reality (VR) gives brands the opportunity to give their customers the closest-to-life experience they can get from a product, service, or place without physically being there. As our virtual and physical worlds overlap, VR presents marketers with the ultimate way to engage customers. Rather than considering customers as passive viewers and receivers of images and messages, brands implementing VR strategies view them as active players in the fabrication of campaigns, products, and programs, with the purpose of strengthening their affiliation with the brand. HOW IT’S BEING USEDD One of the biggest keys to marketing is crafting an immersive experience that has multisensory interaction, allowing users to physically experience the brand by playing a part in its story. For example, Marriott Hotels offers newly married couples virtual honeymoon experiences before they book their dream trip. Lexus lets people configure the new NX to their needs and take it for a virtual test drive. And with live streaming content from a game, concert, event, or another place, people can feel like they’re at the location no matter where they are in the world. In 2016, more and more brands will find a valuable application for their customer interactions, eliminating barriers like distance and cost. WHY IT MATTERS A major value of VR is that it is an interactive method that generates empathetic brand storytelling. Customers can “step inside” a brand’s storybook and endure a seemingly authentic experience in a seemingly authentic place. With the ability to tell 360-degree, 3D stories, brands will be able to engage with their audiences in very authentic ways. L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
  • 6. 4 ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE- DRIVEN TECHNOLOGIES WILL FIND REAL-WORLD APPLICATION WHAT IT MEANS Artificial intelligence (AI) software is programmed to be able to get to know their surroundings in knowledgeable and meaningful ways. AI will soon become an accepted aspect of daily life, as digital entities will be able to compute mass amounts of data and extract meaning from them by way of intricate algorithms. These self- teaching agents have the ability to predict what users are looking for with little to no effort on either party’s end. HOW IT’S BEING USEDD iPhone users are well aware of Siri, the anthropoid personal assistant. However, according to Sarah Perez, a writer at TechCruch, “Siri can only do what it has been programmed to do [by its engineers], and when it doesn’t know an answer, it directs users to the web.” Since the inception of Siri, the inventors have begun a new game- changing project named Viv, also known as “The Global Brain.” Viv is a prevailing model of IA that is able to “learn” about its users and their individual surroundings – and actually remember them. Viv can analyze language and complex queries, connecting a mass of third-party sources of information together in order to answer users’ questions, no matter how complex. For example, Viv will be able to find the best flight for a user based on his or her destination and personal preferences within minutes. WHY IT MATTERS Advanced AI programs will be able to teach themselves as if they had a human brain, resulting in virtually limitless capabilities. This year, AI agents will be further tested in projects throughout several industries, including autonomous vehicles, smart home appliances, and other devices. AI engineers believe that over time, their creations will be able to leverage users’ personal preferences and a vast web of connections to answer almost any query and perform almost any task. L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
  • 7. 5 T-COMMERCE WILL CHANGE THE WAY WE CONSUME MEDIA THROUGH THE CUSTOMER JOURNEY WHAT IT MEANS T-commerce is the direct selling and buying of products through television. In 2015, TV saw an increased adoption as a tool used by consumers to search the Internet through digital media players such as Roku, Google Chromecast, and Amazon Fire TV. And technology giant Apple’s latest Apple TV entertainment device lets viewers buy products directly through their TV from the comfort of their living room. In 2016, marketers will further test whether or not consumers will embrace shopping through the magic of their TV screen. HOW IT’S BEING USED Many brands are latching onto t-commerce technology. For example, the shopping website Gilt designed an Apple TV app that allows consumers to explore products, add items to their cart, and buy directly through their television. The media technology company Delivery Agent also offers its ShopTV® t-commerce technology for many channels on Samsung and Sony Smart TVs. WHY IT MATTERS Through t-commerce, an entirely new shopping outlet will be accessible to digital consumers. And as sales and subscriptions of digital media players skyrocket, the shift away from cable television in America is accelerating at lightning speed. This change speaks volumes, as the channels through which we consume media are shaping our future. Consumers will be able to purchase an article of clothing worn by a character from their favorite show or buy products as ads are being displayed on their TV screens — without even needing to reach for his or her smartphone, tablet, or laptop. L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
  • 8. 6 THE NOTION OF PRIVACY VS. PREVALENCE WILL STABILIZE WHAT IT MEANS Today’s consumers are more willing than ever to provide (and store) personal (and sometimes sensitive) information in order to be served the most individually relevant content and experiences, as well as other things of value such as convenience, simplicity and discounts. The transition from having a more hypersensitive safeguarded mindset to being more permissive with personal records provides marketers with proof that consumers have embedded trust in the brands with which they interact and from which they buy. HOW IT’S BEING USED Digital business technologies are becoming more influential as consumers are granting them access to private data. For example, PayPal is making strides in integrating its comprehensible online payment method with retailers and banks so users can quickly go through the checkout process. Another example is the financial service platform Mint, who collects all bank accounts of an individual and monitors where and when money is spent so they can provide advice for users to better manage their funds. WHY IT MATTERS For both consumers and businesses, the values and benefits of collecting this type of data outweigh the disadvantages. However, marketers must tread lightly as legislation will continue to tackle the issue of privacy, increasing the restrictions on data collection by companies. All the while, brands need to be cautious not to infringe on customers’ privacy at the cost of potentially losing their trust and ultimately losing them as customers. L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
  • 9. 7 LOCATION- BASED TECHNOLOGY WILL REACH A TIPPING POINT WHAT IT MEANS With the extensive volume of user data available and advancements in location- based tools, marketers are better enabled to reach consumers at the perfect moments based on their physical coordinates and connect them with contextually relevant and timely messages in order to persuade them to take action or make a purchase. In 2016, companies will further leverage this technology for a more contextualized experience, including relevant discounts, directions, facts, and other types of valuable content. HOW IT’S BEING USED Brands must pay close attention and adapt to the customers’ current situation in order to be considered a central element within their intimate range. For example, an alert from a user’s phone could notify her that the dress she had in her online shopping cart is available and ready to be tried on and purchased at the brick-and- mortar store a block away. WHY IT MATTERS Consumers are progressively accepting the fact that their physical whereabouts are being used so they can get the most out of their brand experiences. By uncovering the imperative moments of truth that can make or break an interaction, marketers can profit from tapping into a user’s location and personal data to offer the most relevant, engaging, and personal experience possible. L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
  • 10. 8 USER EXPERIENCE WILL BECOME MORE AMBIENT AND PERSONALIZED L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6 WHAT IT MEANS Marketing technology journalist and expert Mike Elgan explains ambient user experience as “information that just appears, scrolls by and then vanishes, mostly in the cognitive background. It will just be there with us all the time.” Elgan claims people don’t think in terms of “context,” but rather in how the experience meshes into their current situation. Through ambient intelligence, devices and software will analyze and present information in such a way that it will feel like a natural extension of people’s external environments. HOW IT’S BEING USED New developments are taking place in the technology world that will allow brands to enhance reality and improve usability for their audiences. Project Tango is a Google project that allows a mobile device to understand precise position and orientation via custom sensors, providing real-time information about the motion and location of a device. Project Tango, as well as other comparative technologies, enables developers to employ digital indoor wayfinding, a convenient feature that can be used in hospitals, museums, libraries, and other buildings for people to find their way to an exact destination. WHY IT MATTERS Consumers expect an experience that goes far beyond traditional marketing and digital engagement maneuvers. Devices and software will analyze and present information in such a way that it will feel like a natural extension of people’s external environments. Marketers who take advantage of this emerging technology will see increased customer fulfillment, along with more accurate, personally relevant and reliable experiences.
  • 11. 9 CUSTOMERS WILL PREFER (AND EXPECT) SUPER- SERVICE OVER TRADITIONAL CUSTOMER SERVICE WHAT IT MEANS Super-service is the new wave of customer service, where responsibility will shift to the provider to service the customer like a relatable, empathetic human being. This not only involves providing support that far surpasses customer expectations, it’s enabling them to help themselves through self-service tools and automation. This dual approach aims to create satisfying experiences for all types of consumers, building brand trust and loyalty. HOW IT’S BEING USEDD Amazon is implementing an anticipatory shipping feature that uses order histories to predict what a customer will need, then shipping the items to the nearest warehouse and distribution center before they even make the purchase, thus ensuring the quickest delivery possible. Dollar Shave Club is another top example: the startup lets customers choose the type of razors and shaving products they want and a curated box filled with products that fit their personal preferences, budget, time of year, and other factors, is sent to them. If an incorrect product is delivered or if the package is late for any reason, the company will send a free “sorry” basket with shaving cream and a T-shirt. WHY IT MATTERS According to the 2015 Aspect Consumer Experience Survey, 76% of consumers say they view customer service as the true test of how much a company values them. Companies that don’t make super-service a critical part of their business model or treat customers as real people are less likely to retain or grow their customer base; customers will stick with the brands that treat them with empathy, deliver the most relevant products or services, respond to inquiries in a personal manner, and resolve issues quickly If not instantaneously. L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
  • 12. 10 THE SHARING ECONOMY WILL CONTINUE TO CREATE OPPORTUNITIES FOR BRANDS TO SHIFT THE HUMAN NETWORK WHAT IT MEANS The Sharing Economy fosters collaborative consumption across all types of trades, including transportation, hospitality, healthcare, finance and personal services. This new type of marketplace will continue to gain traction in the coming year, with new startups emerging and current business models transforming to become more accessible, convenient, and instinctive for users. HOW IT’S BEING USED Companies like Lyft, Uber, Postmates, Airbnb, TaskRabbit, and Rover.com have produced internet-based business models that utilize shared human and physical resources to deliver goods and services without the need to hire many or any employees. Consumers are exponentially embracing these services and involving them across every aspect of their lives. Aside from consumers, other businesses are being targeted and catching on to the movement. For instance, according to Business.com, in 2015, Uber, Indiegogo, and Airbnb, among others, launched new mobile apps designed for businesses, making it easier to distinguish personal vs. professional expenditures. WHY IT MATTERS The Sharing Economy is writing the new game plan for how industries are rapidly evolving and how consumers are leaning in to take part in the movement. Brands that effectively contribute to the Sharing Economy, engage with their customers regularly and leverage insights to identify ways of providing a more seamless experience, thereby increasing brand sentiment over time. This allows them to boost their positioning and equity and increase efficiencies while simultaneously decreasing costs. L A U G H L I N C O N S TA B L E | T O P 1 0 D I G I TA L T R E N D S O F 2 0 1 6
  • 13. Marketers and consumers will continue to encounter a myriad of radical digital revolutions in 2016 and beyond. Technologies are becoming more encompassing as quickly as they’re becoming more transparent, resulting in stronger trust and connections between brands and people. Brands need to stay atop of all the incredible things happening in the digital arena and carefully evaluate what makes sense for them and their customers. J A N U A R Y 2 0 1 6 M I LW A U K E E C H I C A G O N E W Y O R K N E W J E R S E Y W W W. L A U G H L I N . C O M | @ L A U G H L I N A G E N C Y | HERE’S TO AN INCREDIBLE 2016
  • 14. ONE • Accenture - http://techtrends.accenture.com/us-en/business-technology-trends- report.html • Forbes - http://www.forbes.com/sites/jacobmorgan/2014/05/13/simple- explanation-internet-things-that-anyone-can-understand TWO • Accenture - http://techtrends.accenture.com/us-en/business-technology-trends- report.html • CNET - http://www.cnet.com/pictures/amazon-prime-now-a-peek-inside-the- manhattan-warehouse/ • PR Newswire - http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/medisafe-study-shows- the-positive-impact-of-patient-caregiver-connections-on-medication-adherence- rates-300181771.html • TrendWatching - http://trendwatching.com/x/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/2015- 03-CURRENCIES-OF-CHANGE.pdf THREE • AdAge - http://adage.com/article/digitalnext/virtual-reality-frontier-retail/300061/ • Econsultancy - https://econsultancy.com/blog/66587-10-ways-marketers-can-use- virtual-reality-right-now/ • Fortune - http://fortune.com/2015/09/09/marriott-virtual-reality/ • Rewind - http://rewind.co/portfolio/lexus/ FOUR • Esquire - http://www.esquire.com/lifestyle/a34630/viv-artificial- intelligence-0515/ • Forbes - http://www.forbes.com/sites/micahsolomon/2015/12/17/ibms-watson-ai- is-poised-to-transform-customer-service-and-hospitality/#2715e4857a0b73243 9bf1b13 • TechCrunch - http://techcrunch.com/2015/02/20/viv-built-by-siris-creators- scores-12-5-million-for-an-ai-technology-that-can-teach-itself • Wired - http://www.wired.com/2014/08/viv/ • Wired - http://www.wired.com/2015/11/amazon-echo-gift/ FIVE • AdAge - http://adage.com/article/digital/youtube-shopping-ads-akin-google- search-ads-pre-rolls/300635/ • Businesswire - http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160106005640/en/ Delivery-Agent-ShopTV%C2%AE-Platform-Showcased-Partners-CES • Delivery Agent - http://www.deliveryagent.com/ • eMarketer - http://www.emarketer.com/Article/Americans-Cutting-Cable-TV-Cord- Increasing-Pace/1013327 • Fortune - http://fortune.com/2015/09/09/apple-tv-ecommerce/ SIX • Gigya - http://www.gigya.com/blog/infographic-pp-2015/ • TrendMicro - http://www.trendmicro.com/vinfo/us/security/news/online-privacy/ data-privacy-day-why-data-privacy-is-important SEVEN • Adweek - http://www.adweek.com/news/technology/4-location-based-marketing- tactics-are-working-159234 • eMarketer - http://www.emarketer.com/Article/Mobile-Location-Based-Ads-Must- Hit-Audience-Spot-On/1012825 • Marketing Land - http://marketingland.com/four-key-mobile-location-based- trends-2016-158860 • xAd - http://www.xad.com/press-releases/nearly-80-of-marketers-around-the- world-use-location-targeting-for-mobile-ad-campaigns/ EIGHT • Computerworld - http://www.computerworld.com/article/2485982/social-media/ here-comes-the-age-of-ambient-everything.html • Google - https://www.google.com/atap/project-tango/ • INMA - http://www.inma.org/blogs/mobile-tablets/post.cfm/ambient-user- experience-about-to-change-everything • Tech Radar - http://www.techradar.com/us/news/world-of-tech/future-tech/10- hugely-important-it-trends-for-2016-1308808 NINE • Dollar Shave Club - http://www.dollarshaveclub.com/ • Forbes - http://www.forbes.com/sites/onmarketing/2014/01/28/why-amazons- anticipatory-shipping-is-pure-genius/#2715e4857a0b635ab9922fac • Help Scout - http://www.helpscout.net/customer-loyalty/ • TechCrunch - http://techcrunch.com/2014/01/18/amazon-pre-ships/ TEN • Brandthropologie - http://brandthropologie.com/2016-trends-report/ • Business.com - http://www.business.com/technology/whats-next-for-the-sharing- economy-in-2016/ • PwC - https://www.pwc.com/us/en/technology/publications/assets/pwc-consumer- intelligence-series-the-sharing-economy.pdf S O U R C E S