Innovation and Interaction

July 18, 2011

In an interview with the Times this weekend, Arianna Huffington claimed that ‘self-expression is the new entertainment. In the past, people just sat on the couch watching TV’.

The notion of ‘cognitive surplus’ was originally made famous by Clay Shirky. This is the idea that when applied to other endeavours, the time normally spent watching TV can be highly productive. Shirky also argued that we’re now living in a time when people enjoy producing, just as much, if not more than consuming.

Clay Shirky

A recent report from Trendwatching outlined a whole host of innovative ideas not just from big brands, but also small businesses. A high number of these innovations demand active consumer involvement, as opposed to passive consumption. The Swedish retailer Papercut is offering discounts on a variety of items through its website speedsale.se. There is one small catch, however – shoppers must avail of the reduced price within 4 seconds, or the offer is gone forever. Meanwhile, the ‘Google Wallet’ allows android users to make payments for products and services through their smartphone after downloading the app. NFC technology allows payments to be made through shoppers’ Mastercard accounts.

These examples show that consumers are willing to spend time interacting with new technology if the benefits are great enough. With advertising, while consumers still spend time passively consuming media, the amount of time spent interacting with ads, whether they’re outdoor, online, or on mobile, is on the rise.

As technology advances, shoppers are becoming more and more empowered. Nowadays the role of the consumer has changed, and we’re playing more of an active role in our purchasing decisions. The bar has been raised, as greater challenges lie ahead for marketers.

-Carly

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3 Responses to “Innovation and Interaction”

  1. […] advertising, I’m not convinced that the Internet is making us lazy. In a previous post, the idea of the ‘cognitive surplus’ was discussed. People are no longer passively consuming […]

  2. […] advertising, I’m not convinced that the Internet is making us lazy. In a previous post, the idea of the ‘cognitive surplus’ was discussed. People are no longer passively consuming […]

  3. […] advertising, I’m not convinced that the Internet is making us lazy. In a previous post, the idea of the ‘cognitive surplus’ was discussed. People are no longer passively consuming […]

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