The U.S. market for do-it-yourself yard and garden care is worth nearly $37 billion a year, and is growing at a steady pace. Led by millennials—soon to be the largest spending group in America—and a renewed interest in homegrown food, this burgeoning marketplace is ripe for IoT innovation. Modern green thumbs are more averse to using pesticides and other ‘non-natural’ garden aids than their predecessors, especially when it comes to growing their own food. And most casual gardeners, representing the bulk of consumers, often don’t have the time or energy needed to constantly maintain their investment. They either hire a gardener or tend to the garden when they can, risking loss. These market factors—green thinking and casual gardening—plus other industry drivers dovetail perfectly with what IoT can offer.
The American toy industry is worth more than $22 billion annually, and virtually every sub-segment is ripe for IoT innovation. The demand for smart toys is there, thanks to a combination of tech savvy households, Hollywood creations, youth consumer trends, and the prevalence of smart appliances and devices (Amazon Echo). The current generation of children is accustomed to—and expects—‘intelligent’ playthings. This shift in expectations has caused a steep decline in some traditional toys (such as model trains), and forced others (such as dolls) to adapt. The good news is this paradigm shift isn’t simply tech for tech’s sake—smart toys offer significant benefits beyond being, well, toys. And that can enhance your bottom line.
Operating a restaurant always has been a risky undertaking thanks to significant overhead costs, slim profit margins, unpredictable diner tastes, high staff turnover, and a variety of other factors. Sometimes entire sectors can enter an unforeseen downward spiral, such as the current decline of fast casual chains (Olive Garden, Chili’s, Applebee’s, etc.) that once were a safe revenue bet. Even trendy gourmet restaurants with glowing reviews and lines out the door are vulnerable. Research shows that once their ‘flavor of the month’ appeal wears off, diners look elsewhere to eat.
In the cutthroat restaurant business, the customer is king (or queen), a fact proving especially true in the age of social media where bad service can go viral instantly. But attracting and, ultimately, keeping loyal diners is harder than it has ever been. This is where IoT innovations can play a big part.
The internet did a lot to democratize marketplaces and extract substantial efficiencies from ongoing operations. Requiring only a minimal investment, anyone potentially could create a successful business, especially if they leveraged large distribution channels, such as Amazon or eBay. Yet for all the technological advances, many businesses still suffer from relatively high operating expenses due to the analog nature of existing infrastructure—a sensor can generate an alert that a pipe is leaking, but a maintenance worker has to do the rest. Entering such a traditional marketplace, with its high barriers to entry, would normally be fraught with risk.
In 2008, a secretive inventor—or group of inventors—named Satoshi Nakamoto created the cryptocurrency Bitcoin and its underlying blockchain (or alt-chain) technology. Blockchain is a peer-to-peer distributed ledger system in which transactions are recorded but cannot be copied. This methodology that remedies many of the drawbacks of traditional internet networks as a blockchain is essentially a self-auditing ecosystem that reconciles transactions every ten minutes in groups known as blocks.
Monitor, Control, and Manage your Organization’s Devices all from a Simple Interface
AerPort, Neo’s IoT connectivity management platform, puts you in complete control of your organization’s IoT network and devices. With AerPort, you can monitor and make changes to your SIM cards, set up custom alerts, run detailed reports, and detect and troubleshoot any network or device issues all from a single, easy-to-use interface.
Google made more than $89 billion dollars in revenue in 2016, Amazon $136 billion. These companies (and others) revolutionized their industries by taking an existing platform (the web) and maximizing its marketing potential. Such fantastic opportunities exist again thanks to IoT. Now you can take a basic IoT infrastructure and maximize its value via up-selling and cross-selling to consumers. Much like web technologies, IoT-driven marketing treats each user as unique and delivers a personalized experience that both increases sales and enhances loyalty over the long term.
One of the most lucrative business models commonly is known as the razor and razor blades. In a nutshell, you can sell one-off razors but why not have repeat customers with the blades? You can see this applied today in everything from printers (ever wonder why printers are inexpensive or even free?) to vehicles (a dealer does not necessarily need to sell a lot of cars to remain profitable). Which brings us to IoT and your operations.
Chances are your small business already uses Internet of Things technology for day-to-day tasks. Smartphones, for instance, have become a standard tool for any businessperson to stay on top of emails, projects, finances, and processes. And now, IoT and cloud networks provide seamless interaction between managers and employees with smartphones, computers, and IoT hardware to streamline workflow companywide.