The biggest digital opportunity of the next decade

As I tried to explain during my Next Festival talk, after search and social media, a third entry point to the digital world is appearing: chat. 

Wired UK's editor in chief David Rowan interviewed David Marcus, Facebook Messenger's CEO, to explore how he plans to take the company beyond instant messaging. Facebook knows who you are, has your credit card number, and direct access to your attention. By combining these assets they can invent new interactions between people and brands. The value proposition? Marcus explains it in three sentences:

"I had a conversation with airline executives who were building a new app. I asked what their target was - if, two years from now, would they be happy with ten per cent of flyers on a plane having that app? They said that would be amazing. I said, OK, what if I told you I can give you 90 per cent of flyers with push notifications and the same functionality with less effort? And where transactions and interactions can happen within the app because the identity is linked to it?" 

This might very well be the largest digital opportunity offered of the next decade. That's why earlier this year I've invested via MKS AI into Lookup, a company working on capturing the consumer to business messaging space in India. 

As a side note, it's interesting to see how ahead of the west China is. WeChat already offers an integrated platform inside which users can order taxis, send money, or buy investment funds. For once it's the Americans copying the Chinese.


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