Prosumers and the Future of Marketing with Jon Wuebben

Prosumers and the Future of Marketing with Jon Wuebben

Jon WuebbenContent marketing remains one of the most potent and popular ways to connect with customers – but it’s going to change profoundly as consumers and technology continue evolve. Marketing futurist Jon Wuebben joins us to share observations and predictions about “prosumers” and the future of sales from his new book Future Marketing: Winning in the Prosumer Age.

Jon Wuebben is Founder & CEO of Content Launch, a content marketing software firm. He’s a content marketing expert and futurist, and focuses on the ever-increasing intersection of technology and marketing.

In this episode, Jon and I talk about why the term “prosumer” is a perfect way to describe all the things that today’s consumer is capable of – not just consuming content, but producing and influencing it, too. Jon also shares some of the future-looking ideas in his book, as well as his predictions for the marketing landscape of the future. We also discuss the changes brands and companies will have to make to remain influential.

Jon’s got some interesting predictions about how marketing is going to keep changing as rapidly as technology. Don’t miss this!

If you enjoy the show, please drop by iTunes and leave a review while you are still feeling the love! Reviews help others discover this podcast and I greatly appreciate them!

Listen in:

On Today’s Episode We’ll Learn:

  • The definition of the term “prosumer” and why Jon thinks it’s a more accurate way to describe today’s consumers.
  • How prosumers exert influence over brands in new and impactful ways.
  • The difference between narrative and story and which is integral to the success of brands in the future.
  • How content marketing has changed since Jon wrote his first book on content in 2008.
  • What marketers need to know about virtual reality and its upcoming influence.
  • Jon’s predictions for technology and marketing in 2021 and 2030.

Key Resources for Jon Wuebben and the Future of Marketing:

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Full Episode Transcript:

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Welcome to The Brainfluence podcast with Roger Dooley, author, speaker, and educator on neuromarketing and the psychology of persuasion. Every week, we talk with thought leaders that will help you improve your influence with factual evidence and concrete research. Introducing your host, Roger Dooley.

Roger Dooley:    Welcome to the Brainfluence Podcast. I’m Roger Dooley. Our guest this week is Jon Wuebben, a content marketing expert who’s the founder of Content Launch. A content marketing platform and content producer. He speaks around the world on content marketing and related topics. That’s a lot of content there and Jon’s new book is Future Marketing, Winning in the Prosumer Age.

Welcome to the show Jon.

Jon Wuebben:    Thanks Roger.

Roger Dooley:    So, Jon, your first book was Content Rich: Writing Your Way to Wealth on the Web. That was just shy of 10 years ago. So, you were thinking about content long before a lot of people were and before content marketing was really a thing in and of itself.

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. I didn’t think I was but … You know, back then they called in copywriting. Right.

Roger Dooley:    Right.

Jon Wuebben:    Now it’s content marketing. It’s kind of had a few different names over the last few decades but yeah, I’ve always been a writer. That’s always been kind of my gift, if you will and I guess the real big ah ha moment for me in 2004, around that time frame, was, “Oh wow, a lot of people don’t know how to write. Maybe I can make some money doing this.”

So, when that light bulb went off then that’s when I started the business and I wrote the book, my first book in 2008 and I guess, yeah, that’s now nine years ago. That was kind of a long time ago when you think about content marketing and how it’s evolved.

Roger Dooley:    You know, well I think the difference of copywriting kind of implies, I mean you could be a journalist I suppose or it’s more often, at least in the marketing sense, associated with persuasive content of some kind. You know, writing a direct mail letter or writing a landing page or something of that nature where content marketing tends to focus more on providing content that’s interesting or useful in some way but also may contain an embedded brand message or at least to help build the brands credibility.

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. Exactly right.

Roger Dooley:    Yeah. So, the title of your newest book has prosumer in it and I thought I knew what that meant because in the camera industry for years it’s been used to define equipment that’s professional grade but was aimed at high end consumers. So, it’s that sort of something in between truly professional gear that maybe National Geographic or NBC is going to use but not for really the sort of high end consumer but the way you use it has absolutely nothing to do with cameras. So, why don’t you explain what that means?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. Prosumer was a term that Alvin Toffler, the futurist, came up with in 1980 in his book.

Roger Dooley:    Oh, camera people stole it form him then.

Jon Wuebben:    I guess. Yeah. Well, I guess it’s got a few different meanings but the meaning here obviously is a mash up between producer and consumer where we are now helping the companies we do business with produce the experience or produce the service in addition to consuming this service. So, like with Facebook. All the content on Facebook we produce, not Facebook. All the reviews on Amazon we do, not Amazon. Right. So, we’re helping all these companies do their business and run their operation but at the same time we’re consuming the service or the product as well. So, we really need a new term for us as consumers and so, I’m kind of stealing Alvin Toffler’s term and throwing it here in the book and I think it’s very relevant because we really do need a new term for what we all call ourselves.

I think consumers is very limiting so, prosumer’s really … What I’m saying we’re in now, is the prosumer age.

Roger Dooley:    Does that differ from user generated content. I know that I came out of the community building space, built some very large communities and indeed you did have this duality where the consumers of the content were also the producers of the content in tools like forums and so on. Forums are a little bit less popular now, I think, because of the prevalence of Facebook but you did have this … The fact was your users were often consumers and also often your content generators. Is there a different flavor? Are we really talking about the same thing?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. So, it’s all part and parcel right. So, a lot of prosumers are doing user generated content. No question about it. I mean, a lot of prosumers are influencers, right. All these terms can be used interchangeably I think but I think we needed a new term because it’s much bigger than just a few influences out there. It’s regular everyday people who are now helping influences as well. I mean, they’re not typical influencers in the grand definition of that or what that means but they’re becoming influencers either by choice or by their passion for the brands they like.

So, I think some of these terms can be used interchangeably but absolutely they’re doing user generated content and they’re just more involved with the companies they do business with. Right. They’re not just consuming. For many, many years and decades we would buy stuff from companies and we would consume it and the company would be over there and we would be over here and there’d be a big separation. The separation between company and customer has really fallen down and so, I think because you have literally millions of people around the world now falling into this prosumer category we need to call it something bigger and so, prosumer, I think, is the appropriate term. And I think it is the prosumer age and I really want to put a point on that because we talk about influencers. We talk about thought leaders. We talk about user generated content but it’s much bigger than that and it will continue to grow over the next 10 years. And that’s the point, is that the future of marketing in a large part is going to be driven by these prosumers.

Roger Dooley:    So, why don’t you expand on that a little bit Jon. What do you mean when you say these prosumers are going to drive it? How are they going to be, are they going to be creating that marketing content or are they participating in the process simply by creating their own content? Explain what you mean.

Jon Wuebben:    Well, they have more control over the brand. Right. I mean, we as companies of brands, we don’t control our brands anymore. The people that buy our stuff, buy our products and services. They, in a large part, control the brand because they’re out there talking about it. They’re out there Tweeting about it. They’re out there bringing their friends in. So, it’s more about control and influence than anything else in that they will … I mean, the smart company in the future, the smart marketing department will invite these folks in to not only be in a traditional focus group kind of thing from way back when but really have a seat at the table. Like, “Hey. Help us name this new product. Help us connect with people. What do you think about this new service we’re going to do?” So, actually having a seat at the table. Bringing them in and identifying them as a new group of folks to sell to and actually having them be a part of what you’re doing.

And that’s what I mean by the separation between company and customer is really falling down because the smart company will want to bring these folks in, in many different ways. To have their opinion known and to see what they think about whatever the company’s doing because you’ve got to build loyalty. It’s all about loyalty and you look at companies like Apple and Starbucks and Southwest Airlines, all these companies they have great customer loyalty and they’ve already gotten this message. Right. Some of those companies don’t need to read this book because they’ve been doing this for 10 or 15 years already. They understand that building loyalty with customers is critical and in order to do that you have to identify them as … Well, you have to give them their credit in that respect that this is not just a person buying my stuff, buying my products and services but this is a valued person who really can help us chart the course for the next five years in our business.

So, it’s changing the way we perceive the customer and I think a lot of companies need to do that and aren’t quite there yet. So, I think reading this book is a good place to start.

Roger Dooley:    So, really the prosumer represents a spectrum of people who might range from somebody with just 100 Facebook friends at one end or somebody who’s a legitimate influence at the other end who may have huge followings on Twitter and Instagram and so on and that’s, presumably, the brands will be more inclined to deal with those folks who have more influence than less but is there a way this can scale right down to the level of that smallest consumer? Or how do you see that changing?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. It’s a good question. I think we get caught up in number of followers and is this person an influence or not. I think we shouldn’t get caught up in the numbers because sometimes your most influential customer doesn’t have the followers, doesn’t have the influence or rank, you know what I mean. So, it’s more about genuinely connecting with that person in a way that’s real for them. I know that sounds kind of fluffy and hard to get your arms around but I think at the bottom line, the bottom line is you want to increase your customer loyalty and that’s got to be an authentic thing that you do. I think so many companies are trying to do that but they’re doing it in an inauthentic way. Like, for example, they’re trying to buy Facebook fans or Facebook follower or Twitter followers and that’s totally inauthentic. So, that’s just one example.

But I think it’s very individualized. We talk about personalization. We talk about customization. We need to take those ideas and apply them to our database of customers and our interaction with customers. So, I’m not sure if I know the answer to your question but I think those are a few hints towards the answer.

Roger Dooley:    One of the little points that I noticed in the book was that you talked about the narrative versus story and often those two things are used interchangeably and I know that our listeners are very aware of the power of stories and, in fact, even the neuroscience effects of stories on our brains. So, they all believe in that but what is … You make a point that narrative is more important than the story so, explain what you mean by that?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. So, a story has, obviously, a beginning, middle and an end, right. And the whole idea of storytelling has been sort of a popular and trending term over the last few years in content marketing. Telling your story and making an emotional impact and being real and telling your company history and connecting with your customers in that way and I think a lot of companies still need to get there with storytelling and taking a journalistic approach to their content. So, that’s, I think, a good place to start. A narrative is kind of the next thing, right. I think first you get the story telling down and then you can work towards the narrative. I mean, all stories are narratives but not all narratives are stories. Right.

Roger Dooley:    So, the narrative might connect multiple stories together?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. Exactly. I mean, when you look at Martin Luther King’s speech in Washington in 1962 or three, whatever that was. I have a dream speech. That’s a narrative, right. The Declaration of Independence. That’s a narrative, right. So, there’s a difference. Those aren’t stories. Those are narratives, right. A story really must serve the narrative, not the other way around.

Roger Dooley:    So, the narrative is really the framework in the way you’re using it and stories may be part of that and there may be other sort of beliefs that are part of that too but that’s what forms the narrative.

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah.

Roger Dooley:    So, Jon you talk about culture and technology changing content marketing. Let’s start with culture. How is culture changing content marketing? Is culture itself changing?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. Well, I think it is and so, in the book I read the works of a lot of futurists. I mentioned Alvin Toffler earlier. There’s Ray Kurzweil is another futurist and so, what’s interesting is all the books that I’ve read in business, very few really intersected with that study of futurism and so, I really tell people that my book is kind of where futurism meets marketing and so, if you read some of these books by these guys of futurist a lot of it is pie in the sky, a lot of it is just a guess but I always say that if you’re a futurist and you’re batting 300 you’re doing pretty well. So, it’s like baseball. If you predict three out of 10 things and those three things come true within 10 years then I think that’s a pretty good batting average for a futurist because no one really knows what’s going to happen in the future.

Roger Dooley:    You know, or weatherman.

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. We’re right alongside the weatherman. But so, I think it’s important that we consider what these futurists are saying because here’s the thing, things are changing so fast now. So much faster than they were five or 10 or 15 years ago that the future is going to be here a lot quicker, right. So, the things we’re talking about coming online a year from now, they might be here three months from now. Things we’re talking about coming online five years from now, they might be here in two or three years. So, that’s really an important distinction. Ray Kurzweil talks about that. He had a book a few years ago called the Singularity and that was the idea. That things were changing so fast that we can’t keep up with it anymore. I don’t agree with that but, you know, I want to make sure I’m answering your question. I think I’ve forgot what the question was.

Roger Dooley:    I was asking about culture but I think your point about the rapidity of change of technology is good. I read the Singularity Is Near as well and one of the sort of confounding things is the exponential increase in many things. In other words, a sort of just like Moore’s Law in circuitry showing how the density kept doubling and doubling and doubling basically Kurzweil said the same thing is happening in things like brain imaging and artificial intelligence. All these different disciplines that you had exponential growth so, if you are simply extending that line as you say you’ll say, “Well, this isn’t going to happen for a long time.” But when you factor in the exponential growth that he predicts and then suddenly those time horizons get a lot shorter and whether you believe it or not, I’m not sure that everything even … The book’s been out for a few years so, I think it will be interesting to see where he’s been right and where he’s been wrong but I think the overall thrust of what he’s saying is correct even if he’s not quite on the money as to when machines are going to become smarter than people and so one.

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. Well, and to address your question. I mean, absolutely culture has changed a lot and it’s changing and will continue to change but I think it’s really influenced, as you say, by technology and the technology changes that we’re seeing and I mean just look at social media, right. I mean, 10 years ago did we have any social media and now look at us. Right. So, the technology has changed us, right. And I think that’s the key, is that’s what’s really driving the cultural changes, the technology and that will only increase over time and so, the question is how do we use the technology that’s coming in the future like virtual reality, like augmented reality to get closer to our customers, to improve our marketing and that’s the real crux of the book is that idea. Is, okay if all the stuff’s coming online how do we make sense of it and how do we bring efficiency to our operation, our marketing departments so, that we can break down that wall between us and the customer even further and make them feel more valued, more loyal and all the rest.

Roger Dooley:    How do you see VR and AR is shaping up and particularly how they will affect marketing. I mean, right now it seems like we’re maybe approaching some kind of a tipping point but it’s not quite obvious because virtual reality still requires huge dorky headsets and so on and it’s just not something that’s going to be a mass experience until that improves a little bit. What do marketers have to know about the evolution in these areas?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. So, VR is a thing. I mean, it’s out there and yeah, it’s sort of in that stage where it’s the nerdy folks, right. They’re kind of experimenting and I mean that in an enduring way. I don’t mean that in a derogatory way, I mean that those are always the folks that take on the new technology first anyway, no matter what technology it is. So, yeah it’s a little expensive. It’s a little bit, you know people aren’t sure about it. It is, you know wearing that headset, yeah not real sexy, right. But I think the tipping point, we’re still ahead of that. I think it’s going to be coming here in a year or so or thereabouts but yeah, I mean everyone’s going to be doing virtual reality content marketing in the future. Everyone will be doing that. Okay. That’s a fact and I mean, well not a fact but I’m betting a lot on that one.

Augmented reality is just taking it to the next step. So, I mean we’re still five or six years away from augmented reality being a thing in a large part but that idea is having digital overlays around us no matter where we go and no matter what we’re doing in life and that the internet is all around us everywhere we go. Right. So, that’s sort of the wow factor. Like, that would be amazing if that would be the reality. So, I mean, everything changes when that happens, right. I mean if we have instant internet access no matter where we go without a device, right. Without a device and it’s just in the air around us. That changes not only culture, that changes marketing, that changes everything. So, that’s one of the keys in the book is okay if all this stuff is coming, how do we start preparing and planning and thinking about this now because, you know, in five or six years that’s going to come quick. We’ve got to be ready and the move advantage right. Whatever company takes it on and experiments and finds a way to make it work, that’s the company that’s going to win.

Just like that’s always been the case no matter what technology is coming. So, I’m pretty excited about VR and AR and I think there’s just an incredible amount of marketing potential with both technologies.

Roger Dooley:    Yeah. Jon, you talk about multisensory experiences and how is this going to happen? I mean, I guess to some degree brands do offer different kinds of multisensory experiences but how is technology going to change that now and how will these new experiences be delivered?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. Well, first of all the idea of experience is right. Let’s start there. So, not just selling a product or service but turning your service into an experience. In the future people will want to buy experiences so, the idea’s if you’re just selling a service now how do you bring an experience to that? How do you change it into an experience or make a part of it an experience. The multisensory, that’s like the cherry on the cake. That’s, “Okay, how do we engage all the senses?” Right, and make that experience visually appealing. You know. Sensory, touch, feel, sight, sound. Right. All the senses, bring that into the experience.

So, whether it’s a trade show event or a customer forum or some other kind of experience the idea is how do we engage all the senses and I think it’s much easier in B to C dynamic than B to B. I think B to C is way ahead on this one but B to B has got to be there too eventually. So, that’s the idea. I mean, experiences are memorable. People look forward to them. They’re sticky. We do them with our friends and family typically, or our coworkers. So, all of that makes it more compelling to get people to buy into it and get people to come back to it and I talk about that customer loyalty thing. If you deliver an incredible experience to your customers and they’re willing to pay you for that experience, that’s the ticket.  That is something that will continually pay off for you, year in and year out and so, the idea is if you’re a company right now that’s selling products then okay, that’s good. How do you bring an experience to the products that you’re selling? Okay.

And I think a great way that we’ve seen that done over the last 10 years is the Apple Store. Right. I mean, Apple used to be just a computer company. Just hardware, just devices and when the Apple Store came online they quickly became a retail juggernaut and all retailers looked to them because they were creating a different experience. They were creating a different retail experience and they still are breaking new ground with things they’re doing today in their stores. So, that’s a really good way of showing how a traditional company, who is selling traditional stuff, right, products, brought an experience into the equation and so, I think that’s a good lesson for a lot of companies. But, yeah the experience thing is a big part of the book and I think companies really need to start thinking about how they can bring experiences into the customer experience, if you will.

Roger Dooley:    I guess I’m trying to figure out how that might work with so many products. Obviously if you are selling something like a resort or a golf experience or something, you’ve got an experience there, you simply need to figure out how to convey effectively but you know, if you’re selling dish soap or toothpaste or ties or something, how do you translate that into an experience.

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. That’s a tougher one, right. I think what I would do on that question, I would recommend a book that I read my research, it’s called the Experience Economy. It came out about six years ago. Joseph Pine and James Gilmore wrote that. It’s a groundbreaking book on how you can incorporate experiences into your company. How you can transition. How you can bring that idea in and they talked in a large part about that very question that you asked. I don’t have an easy answer for that one but I do recommend that folks, if you’re a company and that defines you then I would recommend you read that book. Experience Economy. It’s a great, great book and it will help you start thinking about how you can bring experience into products suit.

Roger Dooley:    And how do you see brands evolving in the future? I mean, for years we had basically big brands advertising on mass media and that was the way it happened and obviously now we have big brands advertising on different kinds of media and in apps and over the internet and so on but how are brands going to evolve?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. Well, brands, this is something I talk about in the book a lot. Brands really need to start thinking about how they can turn into platforms. Right. So, the whole idea of a brand is still going to be important in the future but not nearly as important as it has been. So, brands will become platforms or a lot of them should become a platform.

Roger Dooley:    What do you mean by become a platform Jon?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. Well, so, the power of the brand will diminish and the power of the platform will take its place. So, if you look at the great platforms of the last 10 years, all you’ve got to do is look at and are they a brand? Yes. But they’re more of a platform and I mean, they are a platform but they’re known more for that and they were the first company, I mean the quickest company to get to a billion dollars on revenue in a large part because they were a platform. The idea is people aren’t brand loyal anymore. The brand doesn’t really mean that much and you don’t control the brand anymore, your customers do. So, how much credence does the brand really have. I mean, yes it’s important to have a brand name like a Starbucks, like and Apple. Building a brand is going to be important but you need it to be something more in the future. Your brand needs to take on a new definition. You can’t just be a brand and expect customers to come to you in droves and stay loyal to you.

The way that you do that, the idea is to platform your brand or bring some kind of platforming into your brand so, that you can get people to come back and get them coming over and over again. Because a platform is sticky, right. It’s hard to leave a platform. You can build ecosystems in your platform. Again, just look at Look at what they’ve done. They built an entire ecosystem of partners and vendors and customers and if you’ve got all your data in SalesForce, try leaving the platform and then taking all your data and going into sugar, another CRM. It’s not that easy to do. It takes time. It’s expensive.

So, the idea is, you know, if people aren’t brand loyal anymore then how do you get them to be loyal. Right. Because that was the whole idea. You build a great brand and it’s an amazing experience and people are just going to keep coming back, right. Like McDonald’s. And there are some great brands out there but the idea is, in the future that won’t be enough. That won’t be enough to keep them coming back. So, that’s where the platform thing comes in. If you can find a way to platform some part of your operation or build some kind of platform or piggy back off some other platform and build a partnership, that will increase your brand loyalty and the idea of brand really changes and I think we’ll need a new name for branding at that point.

So, again, I know a lot of this stuff may, for some newbies out there, for people that have kind of got their feet planted in the present or in the past a little bit, some of this sounds a little bit wishy washy or a little bit pie in the sky but if you want to truly embrace what’s coming you’ve got to be open minded and you’ve got to be open to redefining all of the great tenants of marketing and that’s what I did with the four Ps. We talk about the four Ps of marketing, that’s been sort of a grand tenant of marketing for the last 50 years and it served us well. But, I basically looked at that and said, “Four Ps, it’s tired. It’s old. It needs to be redefined.” So, I came up with EP squared and I really think that’s the new four Ps.

So, I kind of went on tangent there but the idea is that the brand is just not going to be enough in the future to keep your customer loyal. So, you’ve got to bring other things into the whole branding idea to keep them loyal.

Roger Dooley:    Right and Jon, let’s not keep our listeners in suspense here now since you’ve redefined the four Ps as now EP squared. What do those three letters represent?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. So, it’s Experiences. Okay. It’s Engagement. It’s Personalization and it’s Passion. And all four of those are wrapped around the customer. It’s about the customer. It always has been and always will be. It will continue to be more about the customer in the future. So, experiences. We talked about that already. Engagement, that’s where you engage with them. Either online or on Facebook or in a live event. Personalization, that’s been a thing for the last 10 or so years and we talk about email personalization. We talk about being personalized in our approach with lead generation content and with outer responders and all of those kinds of things. But personalization will take on a new importance. And then passion is really the new thing and that’s being led by a generation Z and the millennials. And the whole idea there is what these generations are telling us is if you don’t have passion for your company, for your products, for your services. If you’re not authentic and genuine, guess what, we’re not going to do business with you. Period.

So, the passion thing is going to be a really big deal in the future. You’ve got to have passion for your company. It’s got to be real. It’s got to be genuine and you’ve got to connect with people in a genuine way. So, you’ve got to show the passion. You’ve got to be real and if you don’t have that then maybe you need to do something else. Right. The only companies that will survive in the future are those companies that have that mindset, that are willing to connect with those generations in that way. So, I think the passion think is so important that it really belongs in the new marketing construct. So, that’s what it is. EP squared.

Roger Dooley:    Great. Like any good futurist Jon, you offer forecast for 2021 and 2030. We probably covered a little bit of this ground already but briefly, why don’t you hit some of the key points for your 2021 forecast? And that’s only four years off now.

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. Absolutely. So, one of the ideas I’ve already talked about and that is, you know, moving from brands to platforms. Already did that one. So, let’s go to, from storytelling and audience connection through virtual reality. I talked about that a little bit but virtual reality, it’s going to be a great way to tell your story and connect with your audience because it’s such a new thing. It’s so different than anything we’ve had before. You look Audi and Volkswagen, they’re right now using virtual reality to do test drives. You can do a test drive in any of their vehicles using virtual reality. That’s just a great way to connect with your audience. So, that will be a big deal within four years.

Roger Dooley:    I’ll interrupt for just a second Jon. Do you see these VR experiences being delivered in some kind of a custom environment? Like in a mall or in a dealership or something. Or are these delivered to the person in their home where they’re simply using a VR headset or something hooked up to their computer or TV or some other kind of consumer electronics device?

Jon Wuebben:    I think it could be all of the above. It could be any or all of the above depending on where you’re at but I think most of the time folks will use it in their homes. I think that’s what we’re seeing now. And that’s the other thing, is it’s easy right. If you’re doing it in your home and you’ve got a virtual reality headset it’s easy to do that and yes, it’s a little expensive right now but we’re just getting into it and so, that’s the idea. Within three or four years it’s going to be mainstream.

One of the other things I talk about by 2021 is moving from this pricing and benefits concern that people have when they’re buying stuff. We care about the price. We care about the benefits story and we’ve always done that. But, by 2021 it will be more about that show me the passion for what you’re pitching. That thing that I talked about a few minutes ago. The price and benefits, that’s going to be important but there’s something else that’s going to be important too and that is, do I really want to buy from this company. Is this company environmentally responsible. Is this company, do they have a bunch of scandals in their executive suit. Yeah, I don’t think I’m going to buy from this company. So, the idea of that genuine thing and the millennials influencing the purchasing behavior, I think that’s going to be mainstream because you know, we look millennials and generation Z, those are the future generations. Right. Those are the folks that will be in their 40s and 50s in 10 or 15 years and really driving everything. I mean, in some ways they’re driving everything now because they’re so technologically astute.

But a few other things by 2021. I talk about from human thinking to cognitive enhancement and that’s the AI piece. We haven’t even talked about AI but AI’s going to be a big deal in the next few years. So, essentially we’re going to have help with our marketing decisions and we’re going to help with reviewing our emails and all the things that we don’t like doing today, all the drudgery tasks as marketers we’re going to have AI to help us with that stuff so, that’s the idea. Those are just a few by 2021 that I see.

Roger Dooley:    Well, let’s fast forward then to 2030 now. It’s a pretty ambitious forecast, I guess, trying to figure out what things are going to look like in 13 years but go for it. What are the high points there?

Jon Wuebben:    Well, I hinted at this one already but the idea of computers being everywhere. A ubiquitous internet in the air around us. SO, that is definitely going to be a thing by 2030. So, no devices. Everywhere we go, the internet will be there. We just click our fingers and, boom, we bring up the web and we can connect to anything anywhere at any time. So, that will absolutely happen by 2030 and probably sooner.

The other thing is augmented reality. Right. Augmented reality will be mainstream by 2030 and that’s the idea of, you know, if you’re walking through a park, if you’re walking through your office building, if you’re walking through your home that you will be able to bring up the web and you will be able to bring up this augmented reality all around you so, you’ll see some screens pop up right in front of you or to the side of you. It basically augments the existing reality that you’re operating in to help you do whatever you’re trying to do to make your life a little easier. So, that’s going to be a thing.

And then artificial intelligence. AI is going to be massive by 2030 and that’s going to touch every part of our lives and in the book, I talk about how it’s going to affect our marketing departments but that’s going to be big.

And then last is the internet of things. Right. IOT, that’s going to be widespread as well. So, every single product will have a sensor connected to the web and that will be just a massive thing by 2030. So, those are the four biggies.

Roger Dooley:    Great. Well, that’s probably a good place to break off. Let me remind our listeners that we’re speaking with Jon Wuebben, author of Future Marketing, Winning in the Prosumer Age. Jon how can people find you and your content online?

Jon Wuebben:    Yeah. You bet. So, is probably the best place me and find out more about the book. Again,

Roger Dooley:    Okay. Great. And we will link there and to any other resources we talked about on the show notes page at and we’ll have a handy PDF text version of our conversation there too.

Jon, thanks for being on the show.

Jon Wuebben:    Roger, really appreciate it. Thanks for having me.

Roger Dooley:    We’ll have to have you back on in 2030 and see how well things worked out.

Jon Wuebben:    Sounds like a plan. I appreciate it.

Roger Dooley:    Great. Bye now.

Jon Wuebben:    See you.

Thank you for joining me for this episode of The Brainfluence podcast. To continue the discussion and to find your own path to brainy success, please visit us at


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