Tag Archive for 'high touch'

There’s an app for high tech, not high touch

“There’s an app for that.”

This marketing slogan refers to a mobile app. A mobile app converts content and resources that otherwise would have been consumed through a browser on a computer desktop, to the much smaller and variably shaped screens on the many different kinds of hand-held devices. Mobile apps are proliferating because they are almost always handier and sexier than their website counterparts.

In 1998, broadband Internet connection was in less than 4% of households and almost no businesses. Reporting on this emerging capability, I made the macro prediction that the world would change when broadband Internet became ubiquitous and broadly adopted. Well, broadband ubiquity, today thy name is mobile. The proliferation of WiFi and mobile networks we know as 3G and 4G, has spawned mobile apps which are at once exciting and disruptive.

In 1998, broadband Internet connection was in less than 4% of households and almost no businesses. Reporting on this emerging capability, I made the macro prediction that the world would change when broadband Internet became ubiquitous and broadly adopted. Well, broadband ubiquity, today thy name is mobile. The proliferation of WiFi and mobile networks we know as 3G and 4G, has spawned mobile apps which are at once exciting and disruptive.

A generation before my broadband prognostication, a real prophet, John Naisbitt, published his landmark book, Megatrends, in which he prophesied, “The more high tech we have, the more high touch we will want.” In the 21st century, Naisbitt’s Law, balance technology and humanity, must be the North Star for any successful small business strategy.

So, how does a small business maintain a competitive advantage in the face of pressure from high tech innovation and the primordial human desire for high touch connection? The answer, as with so many 21st century questions, is not either/or, but both/and.

If you want customers to keep your business at their fingertips wherever they are, there’s an app for that. If a customer relationship would benefit from a welcoming smile, there is no app for that.

If a product tutorial video posted on your YouTube channel would help a customer in the field, there’s an app for that. To be able to interpret the troubled look on the face of a customer as a clue that you haven’t yet healed their pain, there is no app for that.

If customers want to check the status of an order they placed with you, whenever and wherever they are, a mobile app can be built for that. If customers do business with you because you remember their face, name and what they like, there is no app for that.

Remember Naisbitt’s Law: Blend and balance the power of high-tech with the humanity of high-touch.

There’s an app for high tech, but there isn’t one for high touch.

Click here to listen to more about blending high tech and high touch.

Check out other great SBA content HERE!

Small business high touch with video-conferencing

In his landmark book, Megatrends, futurist John Naisbitt proposed that the more high tech we have, the more high touch we will want. After more than a quarter of a century - well into a new century - and with technological innovations now in our possession that would have seemed like magic in 1981, this Naisbitt prophecy is still valid.

But what does “high touch” mean? Do we have to be able to “press the flesh”? Or could 21st century high touch be just seeing another person’s face? Well, the answer to these questions might be found in the brain.

Ever wonder how we’re able to remember and recognize faces so well? Brain experts have discovered that humans have a small area at the bottom of the brain called the fusiform face area (FFA), a part of the brain’s visual cortex which gives us face recognition ability. But there’s more: Further research seems to indicate that the brain pulls information from up to three other data storage areas to double-verify what the FFA is seeing.

So with our brain dedicating so much bandwidth to recognizing and remembering faces, it shouldn’t put anyone off too much for me to propose that seeing a live face, whether in person or remotely, qualifies as high touch.

One of the interesting things about the 21st century is that there are many technological innovations that are ready for the masses, but the masses aren’t ready for them. And one of those technologies is video conferencing. Clearly, we’re in the third or fourth generation of this capability, which means that the barrier-to-entry is low; but, oddly, most small businesses are largely MIA when it comes to this high-touch technology.

So with apologies to Naisbitt, here is my prediction: With every business fighting to squeeze a dime of performance out of every nickel, look for video-conferencing to increase in prominence as an alternative to travel and as another way for small businesses to gain competitive advantage.

Two of my Brain Trust members are video-conferencing experts; and I recently interviewed both of them on my small business radio program, The Small Business Advocate Show. Ruth King is the President of Profitabilitychannel.com, and author of The Ugly Truth About Small Business. Jay Myers is the President of Interactive Solutions, Inc., and author of Keep Swinging. Take a few minutes to listen as both of these smart people talk about how to incorporate video-conferencing in your survival and growth strategies. And, as always, be sure to leave a comment.
For Ruth King:
For Jay Myers:

By the way, I’ve had the honor of interviewing John Naisbitt on my show. Click here to listen to that interview:




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