New Technologies: Part Magic, Part Platform
By Steve Rivkin
There’s a certain amount of “magic” in new technologies, in the sense that consumers don’t completely understand what’s going on with products they covet.
- Do consumers really comprehend what’s behind the screen in a Bravia hi-def television from Sony? Nope.
- Or, maybe you own a Cadillac with a Northstar engine. The Northstar V8 has been ranked as one of the “10 best engines in North America” by Ward’s Auto World. But do you really understand why the Northstar is different and what it does? You don’t have to. It’s magic.
The “magic” in a new technology often has subjective and intuitive appeal, like Bravia or Northstar.
But the addition of a technology platform can balance the equation by addressing the other side of the brain.
Let’s say you’ve developed a new family of products – brand name Centaurus — for medical imaging that laps the field when it comes to wide viewing angles with maximum color accuracy. According to the scientists, your invention reduces the amount of light scattering and provides an extended viewing angle of greater than 170°.
But what brings it all home is your platform name: “Super WideView Technology.” Paired with your brand name, your promise is both subjective and rational.
In many sectors, a specific new technology supports the brand name to create a broader marketing platform. Examples:
- Nikon sells digital cameras named CoolPix, a fanciful right-brain name. But it backs up that appeal with a batch of practical technical innovations such as Face-Priority AF Technology (to automatically find and focus on faces) and D-Lighting Technology (to deal with excessive back lighting and to lighten dark images).
- Most ski manufacturers claim their products help you ski better. One brand, Dynastar, has a unique pintail design, an innovation that sets up the benefit of better control. Dynastar combines technology with benefit when they say, “Pintail Technology for pinpoint control.”