Smart home

Back in 2011, I wrote about data shedding its geeky persona and emerging as a valued component in every marketing agency. Since then, data has become a fully-fledged member of the marketing mix, informing campaigns from the ground up with crucial customer insights. Data drives targeted creative output and with it, return on investment.

Technology moves fast and we’re now seeing everyday objects becoming interactive platforms for branded communications.

The household appliance

Come on – who really thought Amazon Dash was an April Fools joke? I did – why would I need a whole load of buttons around my house?

Well, it seems the retail giant is trailing in the US and is now extending the concept by offering manufactures of internet-enabled household appliances such as coffee machines and printers the ability to embed functionality within the devices to automatically reorder goods when supplies run low – all we now need is for the Amazon drone to be synced up with the home-bot so as to receive the parcel, unpack it and install it. That said – if the home-bot gets it wrong we could all be drinking printer ink instead of a morning coffee! Wouldn’t that be a nice treat!!?

It’ll only be a matter of time before our homes become smart-homes. My money is on the coffee machine asking you what you’d like in the morning or simply asking you if you’d like to order a different supply of coffee that may have just been promoted to the device by a brand. The concept is pretty far fetched but if you think about it, these gadgets are becoming smarter by the day and we’re not far from being able to make this a reality.

Big Data gets Bigger

For each new avenue of customer communication, there’s another opportunity for collecting useful information. With the right analysis brands can put this data to work and provide highly personalised and targeted marketing campaigns.

Data has never been more important to businesses and those with the know-how are excelling – according to the most recent stats, big data experts receive a whopping $600 an hour.

This all sounds like good news, but a report by The Guardian and the market research agency GfK revealed that seventy per cent of marketers still feel ill-equipped to handle the ‘big data’ challenge. Just as data experts have come to the fore, we are also finding a vast skills gap.

The answer? Big data needs to become manageable and agencies need to invest in the solutions that make this possible. As data continues to dominate marketing, then traditional marketers need tools that allow them to access their data. Data is no longer siloed, it’s gained relevance in almost all roles, so making this accessible will be crucial to marketing’s future.

If you want to know and understand more about the way data is changing the world you live in, or would like to know how data can add value to your business, please email me at


Dave Gurney

CEO, Alchemetrics - Expert in Data & Digital Marketing
enabling senior marketers to value from engaging customers online.