I can see this being told to children around 2020 or perhaps even earlier. The advent of NFC (Near Field Communication), is fascinating to say the least, the technology been around since 2003 just waiting for a platform to live on, and now it seems that with the penetration of Smartphone’s in developed regions the time has come.
It’s not just the ease of “tap & go” payments, low cost and instant access that is appealing, what about the application features that now become available. With the aid of extremely powerful Smartphone’s people can now track spending habits, loyalty engagements, reward points, budget allocation etc. and also open up instant check-in/out data.
Imagine for a moment that I have a Target® App installed in my Smartphone and each time I make a purchase using NFC it not only transmits the relevant data between my banks mWallet App yet integrates with my Target App exchanging data on what was purchased, when it was purchased & where it was purchased. The interesting thing is in this scenario is that now I the consumer can track my spending patterns along with the retailer. Now loyalty and rewards programs can really kick in along with cross-marketing and cross-promotion.
With the proliferation of Social platforms well and truly integrated in Mobile the birth of Social Commerce has arrived, and it will open up so many opportunities to brands and marketers. Groupon’s unprecedented success should serve as a lesson to the various elements involved that melding established consumer behaviour and technology in a simple, easy way that also leverages consumer acceptance of social media is a key factor for success.
The real power of this model lies in the fact that incremental, tracked purchases are made at the beginning of the consumer interaction, generating pay-for-performance, front-side ROI metrics that blow other “wait and see” methods of marketing out of the water. When you add in a “social media award” component (share the deal and get the deal for free), this model becomes even more powerful, as the campaigns quickly become viral and literally market themselves.
2011 is going to be a great year for Mobile in developed regions with the Smartphone platform and NFC, even more exciting is watching Apps generate real revenue with clever software integration methods. It seems Marketing Technologists will become the new “Rock Stars” in the Digital industry.