Mind the Tech NYC
Technology Allows Us to Unleash Deep-Seated Needs and Desires, Says Google Executive
As innovation unlocks new technologies, people still feel the need to connect it to their everyday lives, says Head of Strategic Planning at Google Abigail Posner
For daily updates, subscribe to our newsletter by clicking here.“I was tasked to bring to life brands in the digital space,” she explained her initial position. “And here I was, looking at all this technology, all these applications and devices and channels, and I’m thinking—I don’t get it.”
Her breakthrough came when she realized she needed to look not at what people were doing, but at the reasons and motivations behind their actions. If those meanings could be understood, then it would be much easier to know how to leverage them, and what to create as a brand.
To understand the deeper relationships people have with social media and with devices such as smartphones, Ms. Posner partnered with anthropologists, a field she herself studied in the past.
They discovered that despite the digital space today’s devices create, people still need the connection to the physical space—their local bar or restaurant, for example. Every such place has a memory or an emotion attached to it. According to Ms. Posner, this practice, well known in anthropology, is called place-making. “Our phones allow us to place-make like never before.”
Recognize people’s desire to place-make and build on it, is Ms. Posner’s advice to content creators and businesses.