Regardless of how you in particular feel about technology, the fact remains that in 2016, we are currently in the midst of a complete technology takeover. Tech is burrowing its way into every facet of our lives as fluidly and effortlessly as a mole through a freshly tilled field. If you look around you at any given moment–on the street, in your office, in your home and unfortunately on the road–you’ll see a myriad of people engrossed in technology.
Some say the tech takeover is too big, too soon and too fast, others embrace it. Whether you’re for or against the onslaught of tech in our everyday lives, it’s impossible to argue that it isn’t changing our lives–both personal and professional.
Entrepreneurs like myself have been greatly impacted by the emerging technology of the 20th and 21st centuries in more ways than are always apparent.
Online Stores, Advertising and Applications
One of the largest retailer of goods in the United States doesn’t have a brick and mortar store that sells directly to consumers. Warehouses aside, Amazon.com exists almost solely online, allowing consumers to shop from their computer, tablet or smartphone, making the act of placing an order for same-day delivery as simple as tapping your phone two or three times. This has drastically affected how businesses run. Any business that lacks an online presence is a business doomed for failure in today’s world.
Advertising has never been easier than it is today. Everywhere we look we see ads. They plaster the interior and exterior of public transportation, our magazines and now, of course, our phones and computers. Any time a business see’s an advertising opportunity before a YouTube video or on a related website, they capitalize. Getting your ads in front of people no longer requires that they watch cable TV (which is spiraling downward with streaming services) or read a magazine; simply opening your favorite app on your phone or logging onto just about any website on your computer allows a business to serve you an ad.
Social Media and Networking
According to Mashable, about 81 percent of small and medium businesses use social media in some way, shape or form. Just ten to 15 years ago this wouldn’t have been possible. Social media allows for quick customer service, interaction with consumers and free online advertising and market analytics. Along the same vein, networking apps like LinkedIn allow for both businesses as well as entrepreneurs to connect with one another, exchange ideas and keep up with industry trends. Building a professional network on a website such as LinkedIn makes networking easier, faster and more efficient than ever before.
Manage and Interact Remotely
In the past, meetings were held in offices, with management having to drive or fly to different offices to discuss internal business matters. Now, with the advent of services like Skype and UberConference, meetings and management interaction can be available at the tap of a button. And, where a phone call lacks, Skype excels, allowing for face-to-face interaction with anyone and everyone across the country–or the world. Similarly, business-client communication has been improved and made seamless with these technological advances. It’s easier and faster to schedule calls and meetings with clients and other businesses than it has been in the past.
Denying the effect that technology has had on entrepreneurship and business in recent years is effectively denying what’s going on in front of you. And if scientific and technological advances continue to become available and expand at the rate they are, we’re only seeing the beginning.