Last week, the tech world was squarely focused on Las Vegas for the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show. "CES has become the stage for innovation," says Chief Economist at the Consumer Electronics Association Shawn DuBravac. "Anybody who's participating in the future of the digital economy will want to be here." For those who walked the show floor, there was plenty of technology to take in—from dog collars that connect with your smartphone to belts that automatically tighten (or loosen). But beyond what's possible, the question is: what will be meaningful? We spoke to DuBravac and Google experts in technology, marketing, and design to get their take on the big trends and what they mean for businesses.

January 2015

What are the tech trends marketers should watch in 2015? In this video, we get the scoop from industry experts at CES including Shawn DuBravac, chief economist and director of research at the Consumer Electronics Association; Ryan Barnett, partner technology manager on Android Wear; Henry Newton-Dunn, designer on Android; and Avinash Kaushik, Google digital marketing evangelist.


The "Internet of Things" is officially a thing

We saw the release of more connected objects—€”cars, locks, even belts. But we also learned that it's not really about the devices. It's about the human being at the other end and the experiences these devices enable for each of us. As Barnett put it, wearables are "purposely designed to facilitate micro-interactions," meaning we engage with them in many more moments. These devices "will become more a part of our lives," he says, making us more present. As they create an increasing amount of data, it's up to marketers to use them to deliver better experiences.

Mobile shapes the "Internet of Me"

Mobile devices keep us constantly connected to people, products, services, and experiences. Using data, they can shape the web and the world to you. They have become "the viewfinder for our digital life," explains DuBravac. As marketers, it's our responsibility to understand the unique intent behind those connections and to respond in a relevant way. And with 4.9 billion connected devices coming online this year, the scale at which we can make these connections is truly massive. Now that we have access to consumers in other moments, says Avinash Kaushik, Google digital marketing evangelist, "we have this whole new cluster of time where people want to engage with brands, and the question is 'what can you create for them?'"

Personalization is paramount

As we've become more connected, we've become accustomed to expecting exactly what we want in the exact moment that we need it. As we heard from DuBravac, "Predictive recommendations are what will drive businesses into the future." Marketers must learn and continuously improve so that each consumer interaction is better than the last. If you understand the connected human across every touchpoint, suggests Kaushik, "it doesn't matter what the future brings; you will be ready for it."

As daily life continues to be reimagined, here are some questions to consider:

  • Are we there for customers in the moments they need us?
  • Are we gathering the right data and insights and getting smarter and better with each customer interaction?
  • Are we embracing speed as a value in everything we do?
  • Can we reimagine our business to create breakthroughs?