We are getting close to a time, when there’ll be so much data that we will need AI powered filters to deliver a certain quantity of data. As it will be more than the human brain can handle, according to Toaster global executive creative director, Jake Cooper.
At The Drum Future of Marketing event held recently, industry experts came together at the Connected Societies panel to talk about how the concept of Cyberville could change the way society lives, works and interacts.
How is shared data used to aid cities?
At Waze, Finlay Clark, UK country manager explained that with its community-based GPS navigation app, the data being used is what people share. However, what he found most interesting was how people report accidents much quicker than it takes for emergency service calls to go in. This insight has been followed but with a partnership between Transport for London and Waze, fuelled by crowdsourced data, where people share real-time incident information and TfL can then begin to respond, resolve and recover much more quickly.
“We do this partnership with TfL for free, all we ask in return is for information back. For example, where roadworks are each day, or when roads are shut for events, so we can tell our users. It’s helping cities with their operations and infrastructures.”
How will this sharing of data become more relevant in the future? Cooper believes that if it provides value to people, they will be happy to give it away. Nevertheless, “People are still relatively ignorant around the value of their own data and it’s true value exchange,” he explained. The value exchange is not transparent in ways and people don’t realise how much they are giving away for free, in exchange for not much in return.
What this will mean is that brands will start to market algorithms because they are the gateway to the human experience. Cooper believes there will be a barrier between the person and the message. “the barrier will be AI or algorithmic in nature”.
Will there be any privacy in the future?
“Privacy is related to trust and that trust is based on transparency,” said Adrian Leu, chief executive officer of Inition. “What’s privacy for me, might not be privacy for you.
“To build trust, a connection must be made between consumer and brand. That’s more the problem that we’re facing at the moment, we don’t know what we’re giving away and how it’s used.”
There’s a fine line between what’s creepy and what’s not when it comes to giving out data, agreed the panellists. Cooper emphasised how companies have to focus on what amazing services they build rather than what they can try and sell.
Take Volvo for example. The car marque decided that it would not focus on software, because it was not its core strength. So, it partnered with Uber instead. Connected societies as a route where reams of data works well with technology companies, but only when there is trust, said Cooper.
“When you have hundreds and thousands of companies who all have different data sets and you are asking people to share, that’s really difficult,” added Finlay. “You’re not going to get an alignment on standards. However, when you look at examples like Disneyland, where someone controls it all with a wristband, you can see how it should be if everything worked properly. But in the real world, it won't happen like that.”
What will all this data help marketers do?
Storytelling depends on who you are as a brand, insisted Cooper. It’s the one thing that will set apart old traditional brands from the digitally native.
“Traditional brands will struggle to collect and have data of their own. What they have is often owned by social networks or content providers. That's where you are seeing a lot of traditional brands trying to break into the service model and reposition themselves.
“On one level, people will enjoy an experience like Disneyland, because they will get an end to end, personalised service with their wristbands. But there are moral questions around data ownership and centralisation of control.”
There's an element of culture in this, he concluded. “In the USA people don't seem to care as much around data, but in continental Europe, there are a lot more worries and in the UK is probably half way between the two points.
“Data is manic and who is paying for the stuff, where the money is coming from, and what the value exchange is becomes even more critical.”
Cooper, Clark and Leu were all panelists on the Connected Societies session at The Drum Future of Marketing 2018. Register your interest for 2019 here.
Toaster were a sponsor of this event.