Walk into any Starbucks or airport in America or around the world for that matter and you see people on their laptops, Blackberries, and iPhones, reading the electronic version of the Wall Street Journal, watching TV or creating PowerPoint presentations; people don’t know what to do without interactive technology. Imagine a world without computers, laptops, smart phones or the Slingbox; what did we ever do before them? Presentations were made on slides and shown using a projector, reports were typed on a typewriter, calls were made either using either a landline or a payphone and TV shows were taped using a VCR. These are communication tools of the past, even the leather-bound daily planner is becoming extinct.
Digital technology has not only altered the way we live and communicate it has shifted the way we conduct ourselves on a daily basis. We have become a nation FAST, QUICK, EASY and NOW! The Blackberry has become known as the Crackberry because of the addiction that people have for being available and in constant communication. I have a friend who is a sports industry executive and brings new meaning to the word multi-tasking-this gal can lift weights, spin and do a yoga class all while emailing and closing deals.
What I find most interesting in the current technological revolution is the way we watch television and use smart phones. (For those of you that do not know what a Smartphone is, it is a phone that offers advanced computing ability; the iphone, Droid, and Blackberry are all Smartphones.) I am fascinated by the way that people are attached to their phones; you can’t turn a corner with seeing someone texting, surfing the web, or watching TV on their Smartphone. Marketers are continually challenged as they follow the constantly changing landscape of technology. Knowing how your customers are accessing information allows you to design a campaign to reach them on whatever technology they are using.
Television had moved beyond the basic broadcast channels that most of us grew up with (ABC, CBS, and NBC). In years past if you were not near a television and wanted to watch a sporting event or television show you popped a tape in the VCR; now you TiVo, set your DVR or program your Slingbox to redirect the program or event to your computer or Smartphone. (The Slingbox is considered placeshifting; viewing live, or stored media remotely by means of a broadband internet connection). Wireless communication is bringing generations together on a closer plane; instead of taking days via the post office, or Federal Express, communication now takes seconds over the Internet.
We have really become a nation of FAST, QUICK, EASY and NOW! There are many discussions about how we have changed as a nation due to the technology revolution, including a “digital divide” in how we communicate. The upside to a divide is the fact that technological advances are making the world a better and an easier place to do business in. More and more companies and marketers have been jumping aboard the fast moving train of the revolution.