American writer/poet/art collector Gertrude Stein (February 3, 1874 – July 27, 1946) once said, “Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense." Sometimes I wonder how Gertrude Stein would have dealt with the information age and TMI (Too Much Information).
In 2005, according to The Economist magazine, mankind produced 150 exabytes of data. This year they project we will create 1,200 exabytes of data. As a Business Catalyst in the food industry, I must stay ahead of the curve as it relates to industry news (e.g., mergers & acquisitions, bankruptcies, etc.), food trends (e.g., flavors, gastronomic, etc.), supply chain news, consumer trends, etc. Throw into the mix the new world of social media and now mobile marketing. At times I think my brain is going to explode!
Daily I am challenged to decipher the overwhelming avalanche of information. Thanks to an intercept marketing project I am currently working on, I have been studying best practices for QR codes. I am bullish about QR codes. They are still in their infancy, but slowly evolving into the mainstream and being utilized primarily by marketers seeking to instantly engage with their consumers – immediate link to a mobile site, customized content, video, etc. QR codes also facilitate tracking measurement.
Recently I read about Coca-Cola’s first QR code campaign. They have partnered with The World Wildlife Foundation to leverage their polar bear holiday mascot to raise money to protect the bear’s Arctic habitat. Immediately I started processing that with Coca-Cola now entering the game, along with some of the Big Box retailers, Starbucks, to name a few, 2012 will be a breakout year for QR codes. Before I had a chance to finish the article, I was notified of a new comment on my LinkedIn QR code post, an article about NFC (Near Field Communications) titled 2012 Will Be The Year NFC Breaks Big—Just Not U.S. In short, NFC is a new scanning payment technology that will also engage consumers. Argh! TMI; I logged out.
So how does one deal with TMI? Here are three helpful tips:
· Identify information aggregators. Follow the right people on Twitter that tweet relevant content. Engage in LinkedIn discussion groups that post relevant content daily. Identify the people in your inner circle who are active online and solicit their help to feed you relevant content.
· Identify online resources that post relevant information in fields of interest. Alltop, the “online magazine rack” of the web, is a great place to start.
· Walk. That is right. Walk from your computer when you think you have reached the point of saturation. Remember humans are not wired to handle exabytes. That is why we have computers.
Be candid, are you experiencing TMI? Don’t lose your common sense!