‘Overhyped’ – what marketers really think of wearables and smartwatches

A clear majority – 70% to be precise – of senior marketers believe wearables and smart watches are more hype than substance, according to a new study from digital marketing firm Greenlight.

Apple is looking to transform the wearables market

The caution towards embracing marketing on devices, such as the Apple Watch, also extends to breakthrough technology platforms such as Bitcoin and virtual reality, according to the survey of 100 senior marketers.

Of those surveyed, 36% believe Bitcoin is overhyped while around one in four (27%) marketers predicted that virtual reality devices, such as the upcoming Oculus Rift device, and (24%) beacon technology will fail to live up to the hype.

“It’s easy to be dazzled by the industry buzz around shiny new playthings like the Apple Watch or Oculus Rift, however our research suggests that marketers are increasingly reluctant to drink the kool-aid,” said Andreas Pouros, founder of Greenlight.

“Hardened by past mistakes, we are seeing marketers take a wait-and-see approach to new technologies and platforms before making an investment.”

Mobile messaging and live-streaming

Last week, Facebook revealed it was working to add features to its chat platform What’s App in order to allow brands to connect directly with consumers. There will be trials of services that allow companies to use Messenger for customer service – letting users chat to brands about things such as online orders.

And am appetite for such services is strong among marketers, according to the study, with 28% planning to experiment with mobile messaging in 2015.

Meanwhile, although one in five (19%) marketers plan to use live-streaming apps like Periscope and Meerkat within their campaigns in 2015, many fear backing the wrong horse, with 41% of marketers revealing that they regret recently investing in a new technology or platform.

Pouros advises: “As the battle for market share between Meerkat and Periscope heats up, we could see some marketers get burnt if they back the wrong horse.

“Our advice is to invest in technologies that are proven to deliver ROI.”