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What Marketers Can Learn From Blockchain Revolution

Michael Krauss

The latest disruptive technology could change the way consumers interact with service providers and cut out middlemen across industries

The technology likely to have the greatest impact in the next few decades has arrived. It is not social media. It is not Big Data. It is not robotics. It is not even artificial intelligence,” says technology futurist Don Tapscott. “You’ll be surprised to learn that [the technology that will have the greatest disruption] is the underlying technology of digital currencies like Bitcoin. It is called the blockchain.

“It is not the most sonorous word in the world,” continues Tapscott in a recent TED Talk. “But I believe this next generation of the internet holds vast promise for every business, for every society and for all of you.”

As a marketer with an eye on innovation, technology and disruption, I’ve learned to pay attention to Tapscott. His books—including Paradigm Shift: The New Promise of Information Technology (1993), Growing Up Digital: The Rise of the Net Generation (1997) and Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything (2006)—have always given me a leg up on disruptive technology trends that will soon confront me as a marketer. Marketers need to be ahead of the next wave of technology, not behind it.

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Michael Krauss is president of Market Strategy Group based in Chicago.