Gitesh Agarwal, ED - Chief Marketing Officer,
D&M Workspace Solutions
So the current buzzword is DIGITAL. In fact the song on my lips is a ‘pun intended’ lift from Qurbani, the hit Hindi movie (how ironic), APP jaisa koi meri zindagi mein aaye, to baat ban jaaye. It is all about APPs isn’t it. Are we becoming a Planet of the APPs..?
The Smartphone and the APP universe has already turned and is further un-turning the traditional world of sales, marketing, finance and relationships. It is all about data, big data, analytics. Without telling you, every swipe on the AMOLED, Gorilla glass screen is being captured by some machine, somewhere, so that the ‘karts’ and ‘zons’ of the Appworld, can predict how will you ‘snap’ your next ‘deal’. Why, you say? Because, as you remained logged in, your digital world is giving them enough opportunities to say ‘OLA’.
Enough of this tech speak. The main intent of this article is to perhaps tell the new 15-25 aged young reader, that there was another world we have lived in. A world of fresh, warm experiences, relationships, knowledge, and human wisdom. A world where the phone was just to check if the shop is open, where we went to meet the owner, who knew about our family, for many a generations, he knew our preferences and stocked even special requests. The credit was based on relationships and his whole family was always invited to our family functions, marriages. The mall culture just shifted the markets inside, to and in air conditioned glass halls, with costlier real estate and year-long sales. We got used to being inside, learning to escape the sun, the heat, to just ‘hang around’ and ‘chill’.
The West, East and all the world made a beeline for these, with new foods, fashion and experiences. Then came the App Attack. What seems to be democratisation of choice, ease of access and quick referral check, all to support our opinion and judgement only to make us swipe to buy is actually to capture our behaviour, buying patterns and choices. It is not about us, it is about them. They want to compel you with propositions, which are hidden in your psyche, the need does not matter. They want you to desire it. Intruding your mind, even when you don’t want them to. So, is this what we are heading to. Has it made life a better place. No, I now buy things I do not need, perhaps I don’t even think about. I am beginning to stop going to the mall and paying the 200 Rs in parking. But that will also take away my time with family, and the food choices and the just ‘chilling out’ time with my kids. As for the regular street, I seldom go, the sun, parking and sweat does it all. I anyway end up quickly googling to check if the price online is better and saying NO, “we will order on the net”. This is too much info, too much data and too much of everything. Please stop. I am a consumer, but do not consume me and my life.