Marketing The Unfinished Product

Social Media and sites like Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and more recently Google+ live and die on human interactions and needs. They’re built around our need to be social. Yet over the last few years many inanimate or slightly animate objects have started to appear on the web. “Speaking” and communicating with us.

  • The Tower Bridge – now under an alias – lets us know when its opening and closing on twitter.
  • Big Ben chimes the hour.

But after reading this article today about – Sobey’s Supermarket’s efforts to tag their fish using some innovative technology from http://thisfish.info/  (thanks @redtype ) I thought I’d explore the connections of man, nature and machine “online”.

Sales and price from the start

We have great tools for passing things around online yet little advancement has been made in tracking things offline, I’m guess in most due to costs and the scale of GPS devices.  The route “This Fish” takes – (coincidentally what they do) is that of existing tracking systems UPS and FedEx use. With a simple label attached to the fish.

I can’t say I would ever track any food under £15 pounds, but for high end food items I’m curious – it could even lead to sliding scale prices:

  • 1 day old game fish, flown in from the North Sea laid in round ice to stop bruising – £40.
  • 3 day old bounced around in a truck across the Chunnel via Sweden and Denmark (dropped twice when packing) – £15.

Weightings could also be added with bonus points for local or organic varieties.

Marketing from the start

For things we care about and are true super-fans of – that relationship with a new product could well begin at its inception.

Connecting clients with their new product as it forms on the drawing boards would be a dream for many super-fans.  Think new Ferrari, Leica M, or your Baufritz prefab house.

It wouldn’t need to go to extreme home makeover levels with camcorders and video crews, but why do we wait until we have a finished product to begin our marketing?

GT40 - FIA GT1

The beauty of many products is in the build quality, so why not feature the build and builders. Managed well, and with simple tagging, a chief mechanic could send postcards or email at various intervals as the product makes its way to the factory door? A true car buff would droop a the opportunity to see his engine being put together, valves lapped in or bearings fitted. And boy would he share that with his connections!

Imagine the anticipation mounting as you track it day by day, until its on route to your door!

As the IoT Internet of Things expands, I’m sure we’re going to see some amazing innovations and marketing opportunities.

What would you like to see being built or tweeting to you?

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