When I was reading about the improved Nearby Android feature, I just couldn't help myself remembering the immortal shopping mall chase scene in Minority Report. Here is a quick reminder for young and impatient Millennial marketers.
So, Tom Cruise's character is running through a mall. The funny thing is that he is being eye scanned all the time. As a result, the interactive ads are bombarding him from the walls. The most interesting part is associated with two ads. One of them offers a traveling package, while the other recommends something to calm down. This guy is being hunted by the special police task force, so the ads were doing a perfect job. From the marketing point of view, of course.
If you happened to be nearby, just drop by
Now, let's pay attention to what's happening with the Nearby feature of your Android smartphone. The name itself says it all, doesn't it? Yet, compared to Minority Report ads system, our Nearby looks like a primitive stone age toy. Google locates your position based on your GPS signal. Then, your apps are being evaluated. The most relevant ones regarding your current location are being recommended, launched, suggested, or whatever. You get a set of "recommendations" what should you do or use, while you're around. It sounds lovely, doesn't it?
Well, if you ask Edward Snowden, he will give you a dozen reasons, why this isn't a cool option to use. Yet, he would never be a true Internet marketer, would he? So, we are back to our Minority Report world.
The Reality of Targeted Personalized Advertising
We aren't light years away from the Minority Report reality, but we will have to hold our horses for a while. Instead of eye scan recognition system, we will have to satisfy our marketing desires with the facial recognition software solutions. At the same time, this movie was a shameless example of product placement exploitation. Yet, this fact doesn't undermine its marketing contribution. Who knows, maybe we're witnessing a birth of the new concept called the Nearby Marketing. This newbie approach will have quite a few challenges and practical privacy concerns to address. Yet, it is going to be interesting to try it out first-hand. As long as our Nearby marketing campaign doesn't become one huge never-ending SF movie.