At Sure, we design our product, a bot that recommends food and drink spots in London and Copenhagen, based on the millennial perspective.
Rather than calling out millennials or Gen Xers, however, our friends at research consultancy Bespoke refer to this audience as the New Generation. They define this group as people who have been defined by widespread use of technology and easy access rather than by an age group. In their recent report, “The New Generations Trend Research” (not yet published), they found out that “human needs and motivations haven’t changed much from the other generations — but the ways how to fulfill them have changed dramatically.”
We believe that five trends in turn suggest that conversational interfaces could be the future for any product built for this generation of people shaped by technology and access.
1. Information overload
Being constantly connected causes the struggle of information overload. One of our main value propositions at Sure is that we help to condense the information for the user. Receiving 3 to 5 highly curated suggestions you can trust via conversational search is much more powerful than pages of endless options.
2. Paradox of choice
With information overload comes the paradox of choice. Decision making is hard, and that’s partly why we see curated product subscription businesses like Birchbox become so successful. Instead of replicating Google or Yelp, we do the legwork for our users so when they search for a Vietnamese restaurant in London, Sure doesn’t show them all 300, including those that are permanently closed or have poor reviews.
3. Trust in friends and social influencers
Everybody has a voice and power to become an influencer. According to TapInfluence, 92 percent of consumers rely on referrals from people they know over anything else. We decided to apply this learning and curate all our places from selected blogs and influencers on Instagram and YouTube.
The New Generations tend to feel a strong emotional connection to the brands they support. The personalized nature of messaging helps to facilitate this customer-brand relationship. At Sure, we strive to achieve the right balance between personalized, contextual recommendations and overpersonalized, intrusive messaging.
5. One-to-one communication
We already know that messaging apps are replacing social media. According to Facebook, 65 percent of millennials and Gen Xers would rather message a business than call or email, whether chatting one-to-one or with a group. There are several reasons for this, one of them being the faster response time. Using a concierge-like service feels like having a friend on Facebook Messenger who knows all the best spots in town — you just happen to share that friend with thousands of others.