May 6, 2010

Technology | Time vs. Tools

Convenience Meets Conventional

I have great admiration for road warriors. If you've seen Up In The Air, you know it takes a special person to live on the road.

I am also a fan of technology when it helps us. Having worked on radio station builds, large scale events, digital marketing campaigns and even written for newspapers, I know we don't all share the same comfort with technology.

Mom Has Never Owned a Cell Phone.

This is not an age thing. Last week at lunch, one of my colleagues was talking endlessly about his iPhone. He added that his 10 year old wants one.

You see people of all ages on smartphones and netbooks. You can get a printed copy or one can be sent via email or text. If you have your confirmation number and your passport you can go right through.

Please Enter Your Code.

While fighting with the technology at an airport recently, I was trying to access my ticket at one of those handy kiosks with smartphone in one hand and passport in the other and luggage and a line-up behind me.

If you travel at all you know that in most major airports you don’t walk up to the ticket counter any more. You need to punch in codes and numbers and blood type and if you have trouble someone who used to work at the ticket counter will help you.

I Missed My Flight

After being told I was on a different airline by two airlines and back to the original airline, the woman politely told me that I had missed the deadline to get through security to my flight. For $75, I got the next plane.

I noticed later that the reason I missed my flight was because the electronic ticket that was emailed to me didn't get to my phone in one piece so I was missing a code.

Technology can help us but it can also hinder us. I worry about mom who has never had a cell phone and looks at her email once a week. This was simply an example and is not about airports, it's about knowing your customers.

Technology can work in your favor, but it can also hurt you if you get too far ahead of your customers. How do you strike that balance?

@knealemann
strategy. marketing. social media.

photo credit: interairport

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