As we look ahead to the trends impacting communications in 2017 the need to get personal has neer been greater. New frontiers of individualization put people at the heart of tailored and connected products and services and generation Z comes of age demanding intelligent platforms and personal assistants that enable them to do their own thing, at speed and without limits.

Internet of Me
The Internet of Things gets personal as hyper-customised digital ecosystems of connected devices, wearables, hearables and content puts the individual at the centre. Increasingly information and services come to us, whenever and wherever we need them.

Smashing Silos
The Internet of Me offers brands a new depth of customer relationship but they can’t do it alone – convergence of companies, products and services is essential for seamless user experiences. Marketers must think like technologists and analysts as an army of bots enable data integration at scale.

Meet My Assistants
Voice activated digital assistants powered by AI change how we interact with the world. The tech giants drive Siri, Cortana, Google and Alexa across new products, whilst standalone assistant apps like Hound and Viv want our loyalty instead. Plus there’s a new wave of vertical service assistants such as Amy and Mezi specializing in meetings, travel or shopping.

• According to Business Insider, the Internet of Me will be larger than the PC, tablet, and smartphone markets combined by 2020
• Cisco predicts there will be 50 billion connected devices by 2020 when Gen Z will be 40% of consumers
• MindMeld found 63% of US adults with smartphones use virtual assistants
• By 2020, smart agents will facilitate 40 percent of mobile interactions (Gartner)
• By 2017, more than $2 billion in online shopping will be performed by mobile digital assistants.

So when thinking about how we evolve the work we do for our clients in the year ahead we have to look to how brands are going to interface with their audiences in the future and ensure that our communications programmes stay one step ahead. Where, when, what and how we place content in front of our consumers matters more than ever if we want to create genuine engagement and cut through the increasing clutter out there.