Marketing in the Age of Context

I get very excited when I read a new book, and it connects the dots for me.

Yaba Daba Do 
Like most people, I wonder what the future holds. Will we finally get our flying cars as seen in the Jetson’s or will we be living in a Fred Flintstone world where it takes leg power to move an automobile faster. My friend Paul Mabray (@pmabray) whose company Vintank is profiled in the book, suggested I read this book I am so grateful for the recommendation. 

Robert Scoble and Shel Israel have written an exciting new book called AGE OF CONTEXT. Their last book, Naked Conversations ushered in thinking about how social media would be embraced in corporations. 

The subtitle to AGE OF CONTEXT is mobile, sensors, data and the future of privacy. In it, they point to the intersecting highways of innovation, technology and how products are becoming connected online.  But more importantly, our products are starting to sense the context of situations.  There are examples like the car that anticipates a problem; the store that informs them of a special customer (or a shoplifter with a record) has entered the store, or the software that anticipates your need or your medicine cabinet having a mirror that recognizes your face and greets you in the morning with a reminder to take your blood pressure meds.  

Are you a Glasshole?
Sounds a little like Minority Report or other sci-fi visions. I had a difficult time putting it down because it got me thinking about how marketing will change over the coming years.

Just last week, Google, announced the launch of Google Contact Lenses. What is extraordinary about this product is that it has tiny sensors in it to read the glucose level in tears of the diabetic wearer. A tiny chip can allow you to measure without the traditional method of drawing blood.  Marketing this type of innovation, when it is ready for commercial launch will take little in the way of traditional advertising. Who won’t be sharing this story? What bloggers who write about diabetes or measurement systems won’t be telling the story of how this functions and provides the patient and doctor with live, real-time data with little intervention. What Mom or Dad who blogs won't be sharing their experiences how they don't miss the pin prick to get blood onto a glucose meter? 

Watch This Video about Google Contact Lens 

Nest: Or take the recently acquired company NEST that Google paid $3 billion dollars for last month. Their thermostats and house security/sensing devices illustrate the thesis of this book beautifully. The learning thermostat can be controlled from your smart phone or tablet. It figures out the external temperature, the time of day and your schedule. It learns if you prefer it 4 degrees colder at 11 pm when you go to sleep. They can save 20% off of your bills each year. 

The Nest -  A thermostat that learns
As a CPG guy, who works in the B2B side of the wine industry, I like to imagine that I am walking into a wine shop and as I glance at the wall of wine, my Google Glass lights up and highlights 5 wines that I haven’t tried that are all similar in profile to the wines I have rated with five stars. I don’t have to start an app; I don’t have to enter data – the glasses know I’m wine-curious and bring similar products to my attention. urge you to get a copy of The Age of Context here at Amazon but your Google Glass probably already ordered it by the time you finished this post. And speaking of ordering books, my new marketing book is now available in paper at Amazon too. 

Now in paperback, get my book exclusively at

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