Originally published on LinkedIn on June 24, 2014
“CMOs of CPG brands, brand advertisers and consumers should jump for Joy because of FirePhone’s possibilities regarding 3D advertising and immersive Ad campaigns.”
In order to provide some context I will reference the CEO’s past comments so we can appreciate the present, and perhaps catch a glimpse of Amazon’s future ambitions. Jeff Bezos the CEO of Amazon once said “We want to make money when people use our devices not when they buy our devices.” From a strategy perspective that’s genius, it’s similar to the razor-razorblade model, except it is much better, given the frequency of use, as compared to the regularity of shaving hairy parts. A prominent CBS financial contributor said, Bezos publicly disclosed that Amazon wants a piece of every single transaction on the internet. Obviously, that would only be possible if Amazon sold everything in the world and everyone who purchased online had no choice but to buy from Amazon. Although it’s natural to associate swanky features or innovative technology with Apple, Samsung or Blackberry, yes I included Blackberry. Amazon has being innovating since day one. If you are not familiar with Jeff, then it may come as a surprise that Amazon is the company that launched the 3D phone. Jeff has been consumed with audacious goals since Amazon’s inception. As an attempt to sell more, increase sales, market share, customer retention and consumer attraction, the FireFly feature on the phone is a winner by leaps and bounds.
Is the Phone Real 3D?
Consumers are curious, is it really 3D, illusionary 3D or something else. Amazon calls it Dynamic Perspective. The technical term for it is Positive Parallax, which means you are looking into a screen and seeing richer depth from different angles. The opposite of that is Negative Parallax, which means the images are popping out, similar to watching Avatar at IMAX. Barring Amazon’s ambitions, the biggest way I believe this phone may catch massive fire, is to focus on Augmented Reality (AR) brand adverts or campaigns for the world’s biggest brands. Brands are still looking for, and highly interested in deep engagement as well as, ways to immerse consumers. A phone which provides the opportunity to accomplish Ad engagement is perhaps the Holy Grail for CMOs. Albeit, Augmented Reality (AR) works well on iPhones, I believe the added dimension of 3D capabilities could be leveraged for superior experience.
CMOs and Augmented Reality Campaigns
Amazon should create an overarching strategy to redefine advertising campaigns for big brands in the digital advertising world. Augmented Reality (AR) is a relatively nascent phenomenon it is as impressive, as it is immersive. Although its momentum is lukewarm, and brands haven’t embraced the technology as they should, I believe this could be the industry’s saving grace. In order for 3D phones to be really successful, and become the phones we all desire in our pockets, Amazon may have to partner with CPG brand advertisers to educate them about embracing AR adverts and campaigns. If anything can increase Augmented Reality’s use and proliferation, I believe it’s the 3D FirePhone. Augmented Reality is the coolest thing for CPG brands and almost any big brand advertiser. Contingent on imagination, the world is the advertiser’s oyster. If Amazon can befriend advertisers and have them create 3D Ads, it would be really impressive, because Amazon’s phones will be used as the distributing device/channel. Although 3D television did not take off, a 3D phone is completely different because of the use case and mobility factor.
3D adverts in the consumer’s pocket is perhaps, one of the last unconquered bastions of Digital Advertising. Any company that controls the pipes of distribution controls a great deal, it would be the darling of brand advertisers.
Innovate or Die, Competitors Stand no Chance
Consumer tech is at the forefront of everything we do, and Moore’s law is accelerating at a much faster pace than we could have ever imagined. If the leaders of huge retail stores are not thinking beyond traditional business models, they will unfortunately either perish, or be relegated to a point of no return, while Amazon licks its fingers after eating their breakfast, lunch and dinner. It wouldn’t be the first time Amazon has put giants out of the game.
Low-cost Winning Strategy
From Wall Street’s perspective, Amazon’s low cost strategy is stressful on quarterly earnings, but it’s a great long-term strategy. Amazon losses in the short run to win big in the long run, on Tuesday June 17, prior to the announcement Amazon’s stock closed at $325.62. On the day FirePhone was announced; Wednesday June 18, it rose as high as $335.60, on Thursday June 19, the stock rose as high as $338.13 Amazon is in the game for the long-haul, perhaps a 100 year plus corporation.
All we can do is wait to see what happens with sales and mass adoption. Keep in mind anything can happen, remember Nokia the phone giant, or Blackberry the original smart phone guys. Nonetheless, Jeff Bezos is in the pantheon of 21st century great CEOs and he deserves tons of credit for pushing the envelope.