This [above] is an Amazon dash button for Tide. In the name of convenience, this fancy little device allows a person to buy more laundry detergent at the push of a button. But not just any laundry detergent - it must be Tide laundry detergent. And there are literally THOUSANDS of these little buttons popping up on Amazon - from every major brand you can imagine.
This [below] is an image from Amazon's website showing the application of the dash button:
You run out of laundry detergent, push a button, and more is sent to you via 2-day shipping.
So cool, right? For the consumer/shopper, yes. But what about All, Gain, and other major laundry detergent brands? I only see one button on that washing machine above. One single option.
This trend will not only disrupt how marketers currently market, it will obliterate it.
If the Amazon dash button concept sticks, can you imagine the brand marketer's challenge moving forward?
In the physical store, the shopper has a choice. There's also a choice when shopping online. But this dash button presents an entirely new challenge. If the consumer/shopper isn't captured before the dash button is acquired, good luck with converting that individual once the button is neatly affixed on their washing machine. It would be much more cumbersome than simply grabbing a different bottle of detergent off the shelf.
For example...let's say the consumer wants to try Gain. Instead of simply adjusting their cart (online or in-store), they would have to make the effort to go online to get the Gain dash button and then they'd have to set up the new dash button so the correct Gain product is ordered when the button is pushed. That would be a pain and would not happen very often, if ever.
This is going to change the rules of everything we know about buying and selling consumer packaged goods. The traditional path-to-purchase is out the window and the marketing industry's self-imposed separation of "consumer" and "shopper" is so blurry it's nearly non-existent (which I have issues with in the first place, but that's another post...).
I look forward to seeing how this plays out. I'm sure some smart person has already figured this out. Maybe it's a multi-brand dash button? Can you imagine how much power that would give Amazon? Or maybe brands will have to start direct-mailing their dash buttons to encourage a switch? Or maybe they will deliver their dash buttons via drone to save on postage and paper?
Fun times, my friends. Fun times.