It has been roughly a week since Apple held its annual product announcement, unveiling its latest and greatest devices to the general public as it does every September. And while speculation leading up to this year’s event came true for the most part, few could have expected the splash Apple’s latest piece of tech would have. The Apple Watch, which falls in line with many of the smart watches currently on the market, quickly became the talk of the conference, the online community, and even some late night talk shows. With a large selection of colors, materials, and models to choose from, the Watch has the internet a buzz, and most certainly overshadowed this year’s new iPhone models, which as expected, are being offered with larger size screens.
Aside from looking snazzy, the Apple Watch may also have an impact on the way online advertisers market their clients. This poses a number of questions for businesses looking to stay up-to-date on the latest trends in consumer marketing. Will the Apple Watch’s unique features impact the way businesses market themselves in the future? Let’s explore that question using what we currently know about the Apple Watch.
For starters – most comprehensive web firms have, at this point, begun implementing responsive design with all of their sites. For the uninitiated, responsive design allows a website to conform to whatever size device you’re currently viewing the site on. From the Motorola Droid to the Samsung Galaxy to even the new iPhone 6 – if you visit a website designed by SLS Consulting, you’ll be able to view the site as if it was perfectly geared for that particular piece of technology. With responsive design making screen size less of a hassle now, browsing on a smaller device like the Apple Watch may not be that farfetched.
Let’s think about that though for a second. What happens when the device you’re working with is no bigger than a large postage stamp? Are there ways to maintain a compelling online campaign, while also fitting into the Apple Watch’s constraints? While conventional wisdom would suggest no, savvy marketers can see the potential – like Twitter, limitations beget creativity. Because the device demands brevity and promotes intimacy, business owners will need to craft far more personalized messaging and curate direct conversations with potential customers if they plan to utilize it. Notifications, contact links, and all manner of communication will become more action-oriented for viewers. So the question isn’t so much How can I utilize the Apple Watch into my current marketing plan, but more How can I adapt my current marketing plan to utilize the functionality of the Apple Watch.
Of course, all of this is great in theory, but the primary focus of most businesses looking to utilize Apple’s latest gadget will undoubtedly be how the Apple Watch can be used to help increase sales. Rumors abound that the Watch will sport many of Apple’s recent program releases and upcoming features. The Bluetooth activated function, iBeacon, allows a shopper wearing an Apple Watch to connect directly with brick-and-mortar stores and discover various deals within either the location itself or an online store. Combined with the slated Apple Pay function (which operates as a line of credit with your chosen bank or company), businesses now have an opportunity to convert sales like never before. There’s even some speculation that businesses will be able to target Apple Watch wearers in real-time, as they approach the business’s physical location. This type of on-the-spot marketing is sure to drive business for some brands, particularly if temporary discount codes are being offered and the consumer must “act now” in order to claim a discount.
While the Apple Watch is not scheduled for release until the first quarter of 2015, we have already begun exploring the exciting opportunities this device has for our clients – and ourselves