Marketing to the machine

What a week it’s been! With a packed five days of inspiring talks and presentations on the latest and greatest innovations, there was no more fitting way to finish than a fascinating look at how we will come to market to machines, courtesy of our Head of Innovation and Innovation Week impresario, Toby Gunton.

This topic is a personal passion of his and he suggested there are three key reasons why machines will become the key audience for marketers.

  • Making connections – everything in our world is becoming connected, from our phones to our fridges. And as this technology becomes more readily available, all our devices will start talking to each other, creating a true Internet of Everything.
  • (Extremely) Big data – there is so much data being generated right now that we will create an ecosystem where machines can understand trends and information like never before.
  • Crunching the numbers and making decisions – we now have a greater ability to store the reams and reams of data we are producing and we are using stochastic models that allow for variation, helping us interpret the data more accurately.

This all amounts to a shift in the communications landscape or as Toby put it, a “Rise of the robots”.  We’re moving away from technology that we simply use as tools towards technology that will make decisions on our behalf – whether that’s automated switching between energy suppliers or our fridges ordering ingredients so that we can cook the meals we regularly make.

This is already happening in the world – one example he shared was the LAPD who are using a system that divides Los Angeles into 500m2 blocks and uses crime and weather data to tell police officers where they should be and when.

So, we need to seriously think about how we market to machines as they will have a huge impact on purchasing decisions in the near future.


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