Microservices, Social Media Data to rule digital in 2017: Sachin Karweer

The year 2016 drove truly deep stakes for digital and integrated marketing across the world. Here’s a look at some of the most significant trends for the year ahead: 

UPI – UPI (Unified Payment Interface) is the next-generation payment interface which will revolutionise the way all of us do money transactions. It aims to move towards a more cashless model. It is quite possible that it may make NEFT, RTGS, Cheque and Online Banking obsolete, maybe not in 2017, but not too long thereafter. 

Blockchain – It is a powerful, decentralised technology that is going to revolutionise the world economy, and is a major technological innovation of Bitcoin. A block is the ‘current’ part of a blockchain which records some or all of the recent transactions, and once completed, goes into the blockchain as a permanent database. Every time a block gets completed, a new block is generated. A blockchain works as a record of banking transactions, while the blocks work as individual bank statements. 

Machine learning – Machine learning like Apple’s Siri, IBM’s Watson and Google’s Assistant is fascinating as it can revolutionise how we conduct simple tasks, including translating content based on intuition. As brands realise the pivotal role of the online world for their business, they will turn to technology to effectively understand and use it to improve their content production and organic optimisation efforts. 

In terms of design, 2017 will see Cinemagraphs and Zero UI take center stage. 

Cinemagraphs are still photographs in which a minor and repeated movement occurs, forming a video clip. They are published as an animated GIF or in other video formats, and can give the illusion that the viewer is watching an animation. They could appear anywhere – be it as background images, home page banners, category headers, and even product images. 

Zero UI is a term coined by Fjord designer Andy Goodman. By his definition, “Zero UI refers to a paradigm where our movements, voice, glances, and even thoughts, can all cause systems to respond to us through our environment.” Instead of relying on clicking, typing and tapping, users will now input information by means of voice, gestures, and touch. Interactions will move away from phones and computers, and into physical devices which we’ll communicate with instead. This means a screen-less experience. 

And coming to Digital, here are the trends to watch out for in 2017: 

Microservices will be big in 2017 and will use digital to reach a niche audience. For example: providing personalised grooming services for dogs. Gone are the days when mobile entertainment just meant ringtones, wallpapers and video downloads. With the advent of Hotstar, Netflix and Amazon Prime Video, the competition for mobile entertainment will be huge in 2017. 

The differentiator will be the content served to the mobile audience, and more real-time broadcasts. 

Social Media Data has always been crucial for marketing but in 2017, it will be the key component. Whether it is big data, small data or market research data, the more you know about the consumers, the better. 

Currently, online listening and social media data is looked at for addressing online issues and marketing analytics. But the streams of social media content and data will now be used to predict trends amongst consumers – most of whom are now online. Heavy users will be fashion, automobile and sports brands. 

(The author is Business Head at Hinduja Global Solutions interactive.)

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