To the Future and Beyond: Extraordinary Digital Thinkers, Part 1

February 25, 2014

BCAMA events are rarely staid. That said, the February 20th BCAMA Evening Speaker Series event featuring The League of Extraordinary Digital Thinkers was about as “unstaid” as it gets. We had a menacing flying drone, an advanced case of vacation hangover, and an appearance by the Green Lantern… plus more than one professional marketer was challenged by the remote control.

Moderator Emily Chow wrangles the Thinkers

Jamie Garratt, President and Founder of Idea Rebel, served up the first helping of our digital next chapter, starting with Beacon Technology. (“Which is what,” I asked myself.)

Beacon Technology

The reason I knew zip about Beacon Technology, or its branded version iBeacon, is because it’s being pioneered by Apple. (I come from the open source + Android corner.) ibeacon-131206We know that GPS will put us within metres of our location. But with Beacon, we can be located within millimetres. Whoa!

So, you’re in your favourite retail environment, and your phone does its buzz or ping thing, you yank it out and poof, you get a deal for that location. You and only you. A real-time surprise and “gift”.IdeaRebel_BCAMA 4

For retailers, the opportunities are worth scrutinizing. There are habits to change and ubiquity to be developed, but lots and lots of loyalty to be gained – especially with increasingly important repeat visit programs.

Wearable Tech

Jamie emphasized that we need to start thinking about it. 10 million wearable tech units of various kinds were shipped last year. Google Glass is likely the most famous example, but we have gloves, watches and more. Start thinking “How do we inject marketing into wearable?”

A prominent example is with diapers that have sensors telling you when the baby needs changing. And Google is developing contact lenses that monitor insulin levels in your blood.

3D Printing

As you likely know, with a 3D printer, you print products in the office – and 3D is about to make the step to becoming a household product.

imagesCAXYSR2NA shoe maker can print a prototype shoe without going to a factory, thus giving rapid protoyping a whole new velocity. Design your own shoe, and have it “shipped” to your house via your 3D printer.




Scary, but cool?  Netflix, Amazon. One word: lame.

Drones, however, go beyond marketing stunts and defence applications. Drones used for precision agriculture allows farmers a much more granular look at crops, allowing for nutrient adjustments in real time, therefore agridroneimproving yield. How could you use drones as a vehicle for your branding efforts?

The conclusion?

Everything is digital. Everything is connected. “There is no such thing as digital vs traditional marketing. We have only digital devices to market with,” Jamie says. We have digital billboards, online interactive TV and more. Jamie cites WCRS and Tool on the iBMW 360° TV Spot. Download the app. It’s pretty cool.


The next instalment from The League of Extraordinary Digital Thinkers is coming soon…