Drones, Bras, Tattoos & Path to Purchase

There must be the equivalent of Moore’s Law for the speed of turning mobile intent-into-action and mobile path-into-purchase.  Technology and patents are rippling through the marketplace that drive measurable efficiencies for brands, retailers and their consumers.

This week Amazon predicted that small, unmanned drone aircraft could be delivering packages within a year. Many have viewed the fun look-see video showing a web purchase and immediate dispensing of a 2.3 kilograms box into the carriage of a buzzing drone and after a short flight, a smiling kid waiting for the package at the doorstep.

(And before we tackle any ensuing U.S. Federal Aviation Administration regulatory issues of landing a package in a backyard ball hockey game or logistical issues such as possible “drone chasers” who maybe on the hunt to pick up drop offs nationally, let’s talk bras. . . )

While Bezos was pitching Drones, Microsoft announced research on sensors built into female lingerie, which collects EKG activity near the heart that predicts a “cookie snack attack” and sends a notification to the smartphone.

The month before, Motorola joined other patent holders such as Nokia/Microsoft that are positioning epidermal haptic feedback tattoos to speed up the connection between wanting-to-connect to the phone and connecting.

Blink

All of the above future-facing ideas are attempting to do one thing: anticipate intent and eliminate barriers.

In short, these solutions optimize the process of turning mobile intent-into-action and mobile path-into-purchase.

From purchase to delivery, from munchies to mobile warning, from tattoo sensor activation to phone activation is ideally all one blink, no needless hesitation, no undue thought.

In The Impulse Economy book, I spent 300 pages discussing the value of impulse. All mobile action is predicated on a paving a smooth path. Any bump en route drives precipitous drop off and abandonment.

Intent to take action (such as buy, opt-in, download) is a fragile thing and on a mobile device this dance between the seller and the buyer is even more perilous.

A Better Mouse Trap

The entire purchase process is like designing a good mouse trap.  We see a call-to-action (trap well positioned at the mouse entrance); the good price or value proposition (cheese); quick ramp up to the product (platform) and a fast trigger mechanism to close the deal (hammer).

While our response may be based on previous advertising or experiential conditioning the sale is all based on how well the brand has built the process. Many brands focus on the pickup and well they should but sitting pretty on the physical or virtual shelf is not good enough. P&G labeled the sitting pretty moment: FMOT – the “First Moment Of Truth”.

(No not “Follow Me On Twitter”)

This is the moment when the customer sees the product and in a 5 x 5 (5 seconds by 5 foot) moment throws that product into the shopping basket. But we know that many shoppers will leave their shopping baskets and exit the store if the line is too long or the checkout is too cumbersome.

Moreover, shopping is not a linear process. We may research the product in what Google calls the ZMOT (zero moment of truth) and only rebuy the product if the product performs in the kitchen, livingroom or bathroom. (What the FMOT folk at P&G call the Second Moment of Truth)

Coining a new efficiency law

But for all this shopping science, the consumer is very grounded in decision and reward. To close a deal, buy a product, opt-in to affinity programs, the industry needs to find ways to speed up the purchase cycle.

We know the famous Moore’s Law shows that the number of transistors on integrated circuits doubles approximately every two years. Martin Cooper coined the mobile spectrum equivalent of Moore’s Law that spectral efficiency has doubled every 30 months since Marconi patented the wireless telegraph in 1897.

There is a mobile path-to-purchase law to be coined.

Intent-to-action efficiency doubled every X months. As an industry, ideas that work are the innovative ideas that drive this efficiency, optimize process and speed up the loop from call-to-action to action.

What is X?