Do You Own Technology, or Does It Own You?

By | August 4, 2015

Wild Goose for DNI’m sitting on the deck of our family camp. There is no cellphone service here, and for the first time, we have wireless. I’m not sure whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing. But the service is so slow that it doesn’t really matter either way.

It’s our annual vacation to New Hampshire, and it always prompts reflection on the role of technology in our lives.

We are inundated by technology. It is so infused into our culture, our daily routines, and our national consciousness that, without it, we are lost. I rely so heavily on Google Maps that I’ve forgotten how to read a paper map.

As I sit here, the pond is so still that the ripples don’t even seem as if they are moving. It is dead quiet except for the water from last night’s rain dropping off the leaves onto the canoes and kayaks below. Occasionally, the silence is broken by the sound of a screen door at the neighbor’s cabin or, if we’re lucky, the call of a loon.

It is from this perspective, I think, that we need to consider technology — as a beneficial add-on to our lives, not the engine that drives them. We don’t need technology. We choose it.

From a marketing and service provider perspective, this means remembering that every element of every campaign that leaves your shop is responded to by choice. No one has to open that mailer, click on that email, or participate in that social media campaign. Each time, it’s the recipient’s choice to do so, and that should never be taken for granted. Real, genuine benefit should drive the decisions behind the content, the timing, and the channel integration of those campaigns. Because rightfully, the recipient could be doing something else.

That said, I’m going to back to listening to the drops of the water on the canoes.

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