Marketing Trends from Summer’s Tech Titans

Summer 2013 has already seen many breaking tech stories.

Lessons from Summer's Tech TitansReal-time GPS traffic app Waze was acquired by Google, the Worldwide Developers Conference announced changes to Apple products and two competing gaming consoles announced from Sony and Microsoft are slated to arrive this holiday season.

Big names, big products. Sure, we’re not all as big as these tech titans, but the publicity they created can teach all businesses a few lessons. Here are a few trends we observed from this summer’s biggest news and how you can apply them to your products or services:

1)      Crowdsourcing

People trust other people like themselves – especially over someone touting themselves as an authority or expert. Many brands struggle with building trust within  communities because it doesn’t happen overnight. Itt requires long-term commitment through listening, engagement and being helpful without selling. Having a great customer service reputation helps this as well.

Take a look at Waze, for example.

Instead of competing against other GPS applications, Waze added a new component: crowdsourcing.

Their GPS app includes real-time data reported to the app by other drivers. It will alert you when you’re near traffic, a hazard, a accident, or even police.

More credible than maps that  don’t track detours or delays, Waze has become wildly popular because users can give and get feedback that makes their commutes easier. The proof? Google acquired Waze to integrate into its current map offerings.

How could customer feedback elevate your products, services and marketing campaigns?

2)      Simplicity

“Our product is a prototype of a propulsion system ignited by thermonuclear energy.” Huh? What does that even mean?

If you can’t describe your product or service in one simple sentence, it’s too complicated! Customers want  solutions that are easy and eliminate stress. If you’re competing in a marketplace where competition is rampant, make yours the easiest solution to choose: no gimmicks, no jargon and the facts and FAQs laid out on display. At least make it easier for customers to make a choice.

Take Apple’s announcements at the World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC) for example. The new operating system iOS 7, MacPro and iCloud are all getting easier features that integrate Apple user experience – even in the car. Making life easier seems to have been the objective with the product update announcements.

Does your product or service clearly make your customers’ lives easier?

3)      Exclusivity

Are you an Xbox or PlayStation person? If you’re big into gaming, you now might have to acquire both.

Neither gaming system has seen a new console in years and competition is fierce. How do they get the competitive advantage? By licensing games exclusively on one console or another. If you want to play HALO 5 on PS4, you’re out of luck. It’s only on Xbox One.

Biting your nails trying to figure out which console to buy? We are too, and feel an urgency to make a decision. There’s a bit of the scarcity tactic in there too. Though it’s 90 degrees and July, the holiday season is already here for retailers, with preorders  making sure that anyone who doesn’t decide fast will be left out of the fun come December.

Now, how can you recreate the same feeling with your product or service?

4)      Bonus trend: Packaging

We all know about “shiny object syndrome.” It describes the urge to try new things before evaluating them properly – not the best marketing practice. However, many consumers act on this impulse.

All of the tech titans above have done some sort of redesign to make their product prettier. Whether it  new packaging, or something as simple as adding a new color, it adds to the “ooooh” factor.

How will you use this summer’s tech trends to further your marketing? 

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