The Mecosystem … where you are the nexus of your market, and brands spin around you.
October 17, 2015
The best brands define themselves based on customers not themselves. Whilst branding started as a label of ownership (about me), today it seeks to capture relevance and aspiration (about you).
Along these lines, Interbrand recently came up with a new concept – the mecosytem. Before diving for the bucket, and objecting to business jargon, think what’s behind the concept.
A mecosystem is “a select set of brands that create customised experiences around a single individual, where every brand in consideration slots in seamlessly, and where the most valuable micro moments are curated, connected, and choreographed.”
In their Best Global Brands 2015 report, Interbrand argues that “the most successful brands – the ones with the most presence in a person’s life – often stand out by blending in, because people measure the entire experience by how much it adds to their lives and how little it disrupts it. They empathise with an individual’s priorities, figuring out how to meet people exactly where they are, and when they want it, and tailor to how people move through their worlds.”
Why is this new and different? Because “droves of digital data, refined analytics, and real-time, multi-platform interactions help brands discover what people want – even before they do – and cater to them quickly, reorganizing around these insights, because, in the Age of You, people are the bottom line.”
We all know that “a new breed of customers and consumers that are more than just co-creators, but editors and producers.” Trendwatching.com’s 2016 Trend Report builds on this, exploring “crowdfunding platforms where people are more than shoppers, but instead members of a like-minded community of supporters,” we’re “presumers.” We dwell in “The Youniverse,” where “sophisticated technologies will offer a powerful dual benefit: not just customized products and services, but a deeper understanding of the true (often hidden) self …”
What does this mean in the real world? Back in 2010, Burger King in Brazil offered “customised” products by printing images of customers on burger wrappers. In 2016, clothing retailer Uniqlo offers a “Mood machine” that “lets consumers find the right t-shirt for their mood.” This is more like the mecosystem, or as Trendwatching encapsulates it, “a more evolved knowledge of exactly who I am? In a world that increasingly values individuality and self-expression, that might just be the ultimate consumerism has to offer in 2016.” Of course, we could go in – in particular explore how the economy becomes the wecosystem – but in reality, its just the new business world.
Here is Interbrand’s introduction to the Mecosystem:
In tech terms, an ecosystem is a complex network or interconnected system in which devices interact. The Mecosystem is a refinement and reorientation of this model, putting you at the center and reorganizing integrated experiences around you. Informed by your data, the Mecosystem considers the “real-life” contexts surrounding you and seeks synergies across experiences, ensuring more relevant services and products.
Already working to close the gap between the business and the end user, many brands are grappling with the challenges of integrating disparate products and services and developing experience strategies that truly sync up with our needs and preferences. In the Age of You, the Mecosystem will help calibrate brand experiences that are becoming increasingly social and multi-sensory, including the interfaces we tap and speak to, the hardware that we hold, the software that recognizes us, and the data that helps customize our immediate surroundings.
Within the Mecosystem paradigm, you are at the nexus of the system. Consider these 4Ps:
People: From linking us to new friends on the basis of shared interests to helping us tap into our direct networks for quick, relevant answers, sensing technologies will allow us to harness collective intelligence and make the most of our personal connections.
Places: Now that mobile systems can sense their physical environment and adapt their behavior accordingly, content will be increasingly tied to context. Giving new meaning to instant gratification, context-aware technology will help us find what we want-wherever we are, at any time-based on our location and history of activity.
Passion: Our hearts-from literal BPMs to the throes of dating-will be worn on our virtual sleeves. Massive datasets about ourselves (AKA the “quantified self”) will become a route to self-discovery, giving us new ways to approach fitness, healthcare, and even romance.
Profit: As people reclaim the rights to their personal data assets, and greater transparency becomes de facto for the data economy at large, people will set up personal data stores that could truly unlock the power of the Age of You.