Monday, March 05, 2012

3 Eras of People and Place

How are the times are a-changing?

There have been three distinct eras of communication.

First, direct-to-consumer communication focused on a physical location since that is all we knew.   Direct mail and phone calls were direct to a specific place in hopes of reaching the intended recipient.   While these methods could be targeted, they lacked deep personalization and really didn't change much over time based on needs.  My house still has the same geo-demographics as it did when I moved in 20 years ago. 

Second, as technology allowed for portability, we sent our communications to a specific person via email and cell phones.   We knew very little if anything about where and how the message was consumed.  This time period was characterized by the 'right message to the right person at the right time' - nothing said about right place or conforming the message to be place relevant.

Now, we are entering a third era where we are beginning to understand person@place.   Looking at the intersection of place and person allows us to be much more context aware and focus on behavioral intent. Some themes...
  • Augmented reality overlays information that would be relevant to a person at a given place.  And the rumor of Google's 'heads up display' glasses suggest this area will heat up.
  • Ambient social networking identifies those around us that we might want to interact with; it may be the scariest trend of the year.
  • SoLoMo and hyperlocal are common topics in search marketing via Foursquare among others.
Is this my new phone?

No comments: