With the digital media space moving at a rapid space, three currents -- trends that will make waves in the sea of digital media -- have been identified here as ones that will be particularly strong throughout the year. As much as one should be excited about these trends, one should be also excited about the companies that have been built to innovate, accelerate, amplify, and leverage them.
If you are a company or brand looking to step up the way you target consumers, this deep-dive of trends, along with a hot list of companies that are fully accelerating them, will help fine-tune your marketing approach.
Cloud-based technology is changing the way the world looks at data storage. Personal content lockers have appeared so consumers can store all their photos, music, and videos in the cloud. This trend has accelerated as user interfaces have become easier to interact with, and the cost for these lockers has plummeted.
Furthermore, the proliferation of tablets, smartphones, and other mobile devices now allow access to personal content lockers from anywhere, anytime and from most devices. In fact, Cisco forecasts that personal cloud traffic will increase from 1.7 exabytes annually in 2012 to 20 exabytes in 2017.
Cloud technology has accelerated mobile adoption by enabling content to be available everywhere. We no longer have to access our content through our desktop or the browser. We receive content through mobile access points using our tablets, smartphones, connected TVs, and other devices.
As consumers' computing becomes less tethered by cords, we are creating more data streams based on many more variables. Devices are collecting data about our actions, how we connect to the web, social media actions, app usage, and an increasing number of inputs. Most consumers are aware of these data trails, while others occur passively.
We are now actively and passively sharing more data and content about ourselves than ever before and marketers have learned that what we do is a better indicator of our intent than what we say we'll buy.
Since we've become the sum of our data streams, companies are being created to mine this growing output of consumer data and identify intent triggers. Search remains the primary means to uncover intent but increasingly location, content consumption, and social actions are creating valuable data streams to target consumers at the most opportune moment during the journey.
The internet of things, embedding sensors in physical objects to bring them into the connected world, is increasingly becoming available in every sector from fashion to sports. The internet of things allows us to monitor the flow of products through a factory, measure the moisture in a field of crops, and track your health through a phone. The internet of things allows us to manage, optimize, and create like we never imagined.
More than 9 billion devices are currently connected and that number is expected to increase to 50 billion within the next decade.
As the people in the world get more connected, consumers are starting to connect to all the accessories that immediately surround themselves. We are beginning to control the world around us remotely through our always-on mobile-ready lives. In fact the number of wearable connected devices tripled from 2011 to 2012.
Barry Lowenthal is President of The Media Kitchen.
On Twitter? Follow iMedia Connection at @iMediaTweet and Barry Lowenthal at @barrylowenthal.
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