Mitch Joel: This Technology Will Change the Way We Engage With Consumers
Mitch Joel is known for his in-depth understanding of the ways consumers, technology, and businesses interact. The technology and innovation expert, and best-selling author, recently sat down with us to talk about the one technology he’s hearing the most noise about, the ways it will impact the business world, and what executives and organizations need to be thinking about now to get ahead of it.
Mitch is a top-reviewed speaker known for funny anecdotes paired with hard hitting insights. He answers questions like:
- How do consumers change their relationships with businesses because of technology?
- How do businesses connect with consumers with technology?
- How does technology change that relationship, and how do businesses keep up?
Read our interview with Mitch to get his take on the new technology remaking the business landscape now:
Q: WHAT NEW TECHNOLOGY ARE YOU MOST EXCITED ABOUT NOW?
A: Voice. So typically, we think about voice and we think about having to say things to our phones or podcasts, and it’s very interesting, but what’s happening is more and more we’re using our voice to control technology. So, whether it’s your Alexa devices or your Apple devices, we’re removing the typing thing and using our voice to navigate technology. This is going to have massive shifts for B2B and B2C businesses in the medical industry, the automotive industry, and on and on. Gartner has said that in the next 2 years, 30% of all searches are going to be done without a screen, meaning you’re just going to say, ‘Alexa, or hey Google, or whatever it might be, tell me what I need to know.’
Q: HOW WILL VOICE TECHNOLOGY CHANGE THINGS FOR BUSINESSES?
A: I mentioned we’ll all be moving to voice. And why is that? Because voice is actually the best user experience. It removes all the barriers of trying to find things, clicking, searching. So, it’s becoming very intuitive, and these players are serious. Amazon’s Alexa team is 10,000 people strong. All our devices will soon have this technology baked in. Now think about this from a business perspective. How we connect with our consumers, how we tell stories, that all changes. The opportunities to create interactive experiences with this audio technology are endless. And all this shores up into this thing I call the Age of Efficiency. Going to a website and ordering something online suddenly feels very complex when you’re used to using voice technology.
Q: WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR LARGE, LEGACY CORPORATIONS?
Technology has always been the barrier of deployment for businesses. They have legacy systems. What voice does, is it completely takes those systems away. You can have these devices, and they update on their own. So, if you think about a sales force deployment, that ability to have it on your phone, your iPad, whatever, and you can say, ‘I need that customer’s information,’ or ‘I need to send a reminder to a client.’ It’s complete game-changing stuff.
Q: WHAT ABOUT PRIVACY ISSUES? A LOT OF PEOPLE DON’T LIKE THE IDEA THAT ‘SOMEONE’ IS LISTENING.
It’s true, there are all sorts of privacy issues, but the other side of that is, we forgo a lot of this stuff for ease of use. We just do as humans—look at Facebook and Instagram. But that sentiment, ‘I don’t like the idea that someone is listening,’ is the same sentiment I’ve heard throughout the decades. ‘I don’t want to put my credit card on the internet, I would never buy anything online.’ ‘I would never get in a stranger’s car.’ ‘You want me to let a stranger pay to stay in my home overnight?’ It’s insane, but we have done all of that, whether it’s Airbnb, Uber, and beyond. If you’re uncomfortable with it, to me that’s an indicator that it’s going to become habitual. Amazon is already selling an Alexa-enabled microwave. We will get used to it, but it’s now.
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