Due in large part to Generation C, keeping up with consumers grows more challenging for brands every day. In a keynote presentation at the iMedia Brand Summit in Amelia Island, Florida, Becky Frankiewicz, SVP/GM Global Costco, PepsiCo, inspired attendees to re-imagine the consumer, the store, and marketing itself. "We are in the economy of experiences now," she said. So how do we create them for our consumers?
In 2013, for the first time in history, more time spent was spent on digital channels than in front of the TV. This isn't due to a decline on the TV side. In fact, TV numbers remain stable, but digital is exploding. And often, consumers are multitasking with TV and digital. Citing "digital darwinism," Frankiewicz added, "If we're not moving, we're left behind."
In order to re-imagine the consumer, we have to remember that we define Generation C solely by its technology adoption behaviors. That says a lot. Frankiewicz also highlighted that consumer tech, such as wearables, not only can influence your behavior but also predict your behavior. Marketers also need to re-imagine the store. Today we're already are seeing smart walls on subways, and even viewing products online and then receiving coupons in-store. We're also seeing what Frankiewicz called "digical," or digital overlays in a physical environment.
Above all else, Frankiewicz inspired attendees to see why brands need to start creating experiences. Forget "media planner," Frankiewicz says the industry needs "brand architects of experience." In the Doritos campaign #boldstage at SXSW, consumers controlled the set list, lighting, and concert gimmicks all on their mobile devices via social in real-time at the event.
Frankiewicz noted that in the past, a marketer might point out that no one is eating Doritos at the concert, but she claims "the rules of marketing have changed. It's about engagement." To close, Frankiewicz reminded marketers to have the "internet of things" on their minds in 2014: "This is not the future. This is today. This is why Google bought Nest."