But at the same time, imagining a future in which drones become an everyday tool to enhance marketing efforts is not difficult. The tool’s viability in marketing is a fascinating topic, and one that can act as a case study of where the industry might be going in the future.
The Need for Unique Visuals
Reading the above sentence, the purpose of drones quickly becomes evident. We are a visual society; in fact, our brains process visual information no less than 60,000 faster than words. As a result, 90% of all human communication is visual, and marketing content that includes visual images receives 94% more views than its alternative.
At the same time, finding unique visuals to support and enhance your brand identity is increasingly difficult. With hundreds if not thousands of businesses promoting similar messages to the same audience as you, how is your message supposed to stand out? Every marketer dreads the possibility of buying a stock image for its communication only to see that image reused by businesses in other industries.
Drones purport to offer an opportunity for businesses in all industries to actually capture unique visuals. The perspective alone – an aerial view that is closer than a helicopter or airplane could ever be – enables still of moving footage to stand out from the countless stock images and generic smiling faces so many marketers rely on.
Where We Are Now
As a result, drones are beginning to take hold in marketing. Real estate marketersparticularly have begun to take advantage of the new possibilities offered by this technology, showcasing homes and properties from unique angles to drive buyer interest. Similarly, hotels and other hospitality clients are using drones to showcase their resorts.
Travel marketing has also benefited from the unique visual perspective drones can provide. This video of a dolphin stampede, captured from stunning angles by a drone just above the surface of the water, has gained more than 11 million views on YouTube and attracted significant business to the company which filmed it, DolphinSarafi in Orange County, CA.
But potential uses of drones are beginning to extend beyond merely focusing on a property or natural event from a unique perspective. In the past two years, the British startup FunnyHowFlowersDoThat got significant mileage out of its so-called Cupidrone, which was shown dropping roses out of the sky for lucky couples in Paris and Verona. The footage was captured, fittingly, by a second drone filming the action.
In short, marketers from multiple industries are beginning to realize the power and prestige that comes with using a drone. It seems like a matter of time before drones emerge as a common marketing tool. And if it develops anything like other marketing technology in the past, increased use will be directly related to more innovation. In 2016, simply using a drone to aid your marketing is enough to stand out. But a few years from now, when competitors use the same technology, more creative uses will be needed to maintain your competitive advantage.
Where Drones Might Take Marketing
As with any new technology, the possibilities for drones in marketing seem almost endless. It is not difficult to imagine, for example, situations in which they help to connect the marketing and sales process of companies across industries. Amazon Air represents a first step toward this goal, but others are sure to follow in the near future.
Depending on where you look, this more inclusive future of drones in marketing is closer than you look. Facebook, for example, revealed Aquila last July, a drone unlike any marketers have seen before. Solar-powered and with a wingspan the size of a Boeing 737, it will fly at an altitude between 60,000 and 90,000 feet, it will broadcast internet to remote corners of the world.
Increased internet access, of course is not only a social cause for Facebook – it will also increase the number of potential users for the world’s largest social network, ultimately increasing revenue.
As federal regulations for commercial uses of drones begin to loosen, other companies will start to follow suit. As the technology becomes more easily available, even small businesses will be able to take advantage of the unique visual perspective offered by drone footage. Couple that with another potential outlet for innovation, and it’s not difficult to imagine a future in which drones play as crucial of a part in the marketing efforts of companies across industries as social media does today.
Are drones the next big thing in marketing? No one knows for sure, but considering the near limitless possibilities, it’s certainly likely. To learn more about drones and other innovations that could forever change marketing as we know it, contact us.