The Internet of Things promises to connect millions of consumer, industrial, and infrastructure sensors into a networked world that is always giving and receiving data. This ecosystem can already be seen in its juvenile stages as wearable devices and industrial sensors take off. Soon, nearly every building, person, and street will be connected through these devices, allowing us to learn more about the world around us in seconds by simply hitting “refresh.”

This new world offers unfathomable opportunities for businesses and marketers as it develops. Any brand that wants to remain viable in the coming decades will want to sit up and listen to what Internet of Things devices can do today. Otherwise, the devices of tomorrow will seem so foreign that catching up could take a lifetime.

What Exactly Is the Internet of Things?

The “Internet of Things” (IoT) is a term used to describe internet-connected sensors that, together, form a huge network of connected devices. Think of it as the “smart home” concept with a large reach, allowing homeowners to turn on their TV, coffee maker, lights, and thermostat all from their smartphone miles away.

On an industrial scale, IoT networks have already made their mark. Manufacturers know what is going on at every inch of their assembly line thanks to device sensors that measure conveyor belt speed, item counts and employee movements. Dutch garbage company Rova uses IoT sensors to track dumpsters throughout major cities, optimizing truck routes based on which dumpsters are full and which ones can wait another day or so for pickup.

IoT devices are making their way into our homes within devices like fitness trackers, smart refrigerators, and connected crockpots. The aim of these devices is to offer wireless connectivity through smartphone apps while also collecting data to help you learn more. Certain fitness trackers, for instance, let you learn about your sleep quality. The aforementioned Nest Thermostat sets a schedule for heating and cooling that matches your habits.

As these devices advance and more data becomes available, other companies can learn from it. That is where the IoT really takes off and where businesses should take note.

How Can the Internet of Things Help Marketing?

The recent data influx has transformed marketing. Businesses now know more than ever about when customers think about buying certain products based on their browser history. Website traffic data lets them know which sites pull in the most potential customers, and audience data helps them learn which genders, age groups, income demographics and other segments care the most about their services.

As more anonymized IoT becomes available, companies can quickly learn how to make better products. For instance, connected sensors in GM vehicles could lead to better performance, fuel mileage, and safety.

Other, smaller companies may soon have access to this data through third-party vendors. Eventually, we may see IoT devices being manufactured and branded through OEM. To understand what this process means, consider Amazon’s Dash button, This product allows people to reorder something they are low on — such as laundry detergent, coffee pods, or diapers — with the push of just one button.

OEM manufacturing means that the same people who make products like Dash could make versions for your business, allowing you to have one-button scheduling for haircut appointments, for instance, once someone gets past the five-week mark.

As IoT development grows, expect even more creative uses for multi-purpose devices that all learn from owners to develop smarter, better and more well-loved products.

Of course, when your company gets smarter, so does your marketing. Let Optimum Productions help show you the way, with video marketing that makes use of audience data to have maximum impact. Take a look at our video marketing services to learn more.