Devices like Google Glass, Nike FuelBand and are all forms of wearable gadgets which are able to collect data based on the user’s activity (like Nike’s FuelBand) and even their sleep schedule (like Jawbone Up – ’cause that’s not freaky at all….), begging the question: when will advertisers be invited to cash in on the opportunity to broadcast user-specific targeted marketing on these new platforms? Bloomberg TV aired a segment by Mashable earlier this week about Google’s new patent to use Google Glass to “see your feelings” (yup, totally not creepy) and how connective devices like this are likely to transform advertising (but not into a Fahrenheit 451 type situation, no, we’re not headed there AT ALL).
The technology tracks eye movements and would theoretically allow advertisers to note how many times users look at adverts and for how long, paving the way for a “pay-per-gaze” advertising model – although Google has asserted that Glass will be ad-free. Mashable predicts that this will also lead to the use of ‘augmented’ reality in advertising – responsively bringing up additional information, deals and promotions related to the business or product the user is looking at.
Advertisers are increasingly focusing marketing strategies on paying for engagement with customers, and devices like Google Glass provide direct access to user behaviour in a way that social media and traditional digital marketing can’t. But will users really want advertisers to “see their feelings” when some people baulk at predictive search functions?
So, will “pay-per-gaze” technology improve and expand our experience of technology, or is it simply a precursor to in-your-head advertising? The emotional response and user engagement to an ad could revolutionise advertising strategy and response, but could be a step too far for customer privacy. Hey, we’re all for clever and personalised marketing, and paid search advertising is one of our specialities, but the user base for Google Glass is still pretty limited and our feeling is that for customised advertising like this to work, there needs to be a way for users to interact and respond.
What do you think? Is pay-per-gaze the future of paid search marketing or do we have a little longer to wait until augmented reality is a major part of digital and device marketing?