Tuesday, August 25, 2009
The impact of web development on brands - some predictions
I’ve been thinking a fair bit lately about the future of the web. It’s tough to make predictions, but hey, it’s fun to think about how radically the web will transform our lives and the way brands will need to evolve to attract and retain customers. With computing power doubling every 2 years, it’s predicted that at the current growth rate computers should be equal to the intellectual processing capability of humans by 2019! This seems a bit far fetched to me.
Nevertheless there is no doubt that sooner rather than later computers will become super-smart, meaning that the future may be less about what we do as a race but more about what happens to us as a consequence of the technology we have developed. Indeed, it has already begun - many folks claim that visiting virtual worlds helps them understand more about themselves.
The number of people ratings products and services on the web will increase. Only those brands that can monitor and respond effectively to this online scrutiny will prosper. Consumers will discuss benefits rather than features. Niche players will multiply leading to greater diversity of product and offer and, ultimately, consumer choice.
The online space will eat up an ever increasing portion of the sales cake due to lower cost of sales and consumers' buying habits. Brands on the High Street will have to increasingly create innovative, experiential environments to attract customers, like the Apple Store in Sydney or Nike Town in London.
Tools for creative self expression will continue to emerge, allowing for works limited only by the imagination. Brands that celebrate the individual nature of humans will increase. As consumers experience greater variety and diversity, they will tend to value the unconventional over the conservative.