September 1st, 2020
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Today’s consumers are immersed in a vast and complex array of networks. Each network features an interconnected mesh of people and firms, and now, with the rise of the Internet of Things (IoT), also objects. Technology (particularly mobile devices) enables such connections, and facilitates many kinds of interactions in these networks—from transactions, to social information sharing, to people interfacing with connected devices (e.g., wearable technology). We introduce the POP-framework, discuss how People, Objects and the Physical world interconnect with each other and how it results in an increasing amount of connected data, and briefly summarize existing knowledge on these inter-connections. We also provide an agenda for future research focused on examining potential impact of IoT and smart products on consumer behavior and firm strategies.

On the dimension of “people” in POP, consumers can instantly communicate with others through a variety of means. Vocally, consumers can talk with other people without them needing to be present in the same location. Visually, multiple smartphone apps (e.g., Facetime, Skype) enable people to see each other via live video. Virtually, consumers can connect with others through various text-based or social media platforms (e.g., Telegraph, Twitter, Facebook and Snapchat). Beyond connecting with others, consumers can also monitor others, such as 4 employers their employees and parents their children. Consumers can also connect with themselves via wearable technology. Specifically, in what is known as the “connected self,” wearable technology equipped with multiple sensors and LEDs such as Fitbit provide wearers with instantaneous access to various personal health metrics such as heart rate, sleep patterns, and calories burned. Wearable technology is thus revolutionizing how people approach activities, such as how athletes train or how frequently office workers take a break from their stationary positions.

On the dimension of “Object”, consumers can connect with the objects they possess and other “connected” objects and sensors present in both public and private spaces. For example, people can now start their automobiles remotely, monitor their “smart” homes and give commands to objects within the home (such as the thermostat), as well as sync information across devices. The IoT extends beyond current possessions to future ones as well, such as the ability to track packages while in transit, from the time of departure at the warehouse to delivery at houses or businesses. Generally, with respect to consumer IoT applications, we are observing many-to-many interactions between smart products—passively, without active human interventions—and interactions between smart products and consumers that are more active. This mixture of interactions, among objects and between consumers and objects, represents somewhat of a “frontier” for consumer connectivity as we currently understand it. The inclusion of connectivity with and among objects—a key part of this framework—adds a layer of additional complexity that, to date, has not been well understood in the consumer behavior and marketing literature. On the dimension of “Physical”, consumers can connect with their environment such as locating where they are in real-time in order to optimally navigate to a desired destination (e.g., 5 using mobile apps such as Google Maps or Waze). As more cities become “connected cities” and “smart cities”, consumers can instantly learn about the weather, traffic conditions, and current events, as well as the location of public transport (e.g., ride-shares, buses, trains, planes). Constant connectivity also enables citizens to report on various aspects of physical surroundings that may need extra attention from authorities, both actively (such as filing a report of some infrastructure malfunction on a mobile device) and passively (through enabling automatic location-based transmission of traffic and pavement malfunction). Wearable technology also enables consumers to monitor themselves in their physical environment, such as their distance traveled and the speed at which they traveled. The ability to connect to rich and vast amounts of data in their environment transforms consumers into more informed and empowered shoppers. For instance, consumers can learn about the prices of products at different physical and online stores and can access customer reviews while shopping.

On the flip side, the connectivity offers the opportunity for firms and governments to respond to consumer actions and shape their demands to increase the profitability or system efficiency from a public policy perspective. More generally, the migration towards smart retail and smart cities is enabled by understanding and predicting consumer needs using not only mobile devices but a host of sensors collecting fine grained data about consumers, infrastructures and integrated systems. These rich sets of interactions that have never been witnessed before offer a tremendous opportunity to answer several research questions related to socio-cyber-physical systems. Connectivity also transforms some traditionally physical formats (e.g., newspapers) into digital formats (e.g., information, entertainment, etc.) for consumers. In the following sections, we expand on the POP framework for consumer connectivity and discuss how connectivity is changing the way in which consumers connect with people, 6 objectives, and their physical worlds. We also propose avenues for future research aimed at understanding these increasingly complex interactions.

Emotions spread through social ties as people are embedded in social networks, where ideas, opinions, experiences and behaviors are constantly shared. In fact, people have always willingly sought out others for sharing or for assistance, but with the emergence of the internet and mobile phones; consumers can now connect virtually with anyone, anywhere and at any time. Interpersonal WOM communication increasingly takes place online, which enables consumers to share their experiences and emotions easily and openly, thereby creating a social web.

 It is very useful for consumers to be able to compare a large number of offers, which would be hindered at the traditional purchase system. E-consumers verify information available on the Internet on specialized forums and blogs, focusing primarily on specific contents and clear message. It needs to be said here that consumers usually use various sources of information and verify, test and compare attributes or parameters they consider interesting.

At the Consumenta trade fair in Nuremberg, the Nuremberg exhibition center is transformed into a huge world of experience and shopping mile. Around 1,400 exhibitors gather at the Consumenta Messe Nurnberg and offer a wide range of products and services from the areas of construction, living, household, hobby, health and enjoyment. The trade fair experience is characterized by new products, trends and live events with demonstrations and various entertaining shows, where visitors can experience, touch and test the goods of the exhibitors live and get comprehensive advice in direct consultation with manufacturers, dealers and experts , The large regional offer of the Franconia consumer fair, which is presented extensively and informatively by companies, counties and cities from the metropolitan region, is particularly popular. Fascination and the pet fair HausFreunde round off the diverse range of exhibitors. On the second weekend, the inventors’ fair IENA also accompanies the Consummate fair in Nuremberg and thus also offers an ideal platform for inventors, innovative companies and licensees from all over the world to present and market clever inventions and exciting product ideas.

The consumer fair was first held in 1952 under the name “The Shopping Bag”. At the premiere in what was then the Nuremberg exhibition center on Berliner Platz, 25,000 visitors were counted. From the mid-1950s, the fair was held annually. As a result of the economic upswing, visitor numbers rose, and in 1967 the 100,000 mark was exceeded for the first time. In 1970 the name was changed to Consummate, and in 1973 the fair took place for the first time in the newly built exhibition center in the Langwasser district. In the 1980s and 90s, the number of exhibitors ranged from 800 to 900. In 1989 a record was set with around 270,000 visitors, which is still there today.

The regional focus has increased since the late 1990s. Also, municipalities and counties in the region are now among the exhibitors and provide for tourist attractions and local specialties. 

The Consumenta in Nuremberg is one of the largest consumer goods fair in Germany. Every autumn, Consumenta invites you to one of the largest and most successful German public fairs in the Nuremberg Exhibition Center. The annual trade fair in Nuremberg is one of the largest and most successful trade fairs in Germany when it comes to communication between consumers and retailers, tradesmen, service providers, associations and organizations. On around 90,000 square meters of exhibition space, Consumenta not only offers an attractive shopping mile of great experience, it also bundles a huge range of information and advice. DE Visitors have free specialist lectures on health topics in the Health Park, expert lectures on the topics of construction, modernization,

Overall, the organizers welcomed around 169,000 visitors to the Consumenta in Nuremberg on the 9 days of the fair.

With around 161,000 visitors, 8,000 more visitors came than in the previous year. Satisfied exhibitors and a lot of recognition for the concept of the fair alongside the regional hall, the offers of fem for women and the game world were visitor magnet top-class sport and two sold-out top gala shows.

It takes place annually in autumn and is a very well attended trade fair of this kind with approximately 200,000 visitors each and approximately. 1,000 exhibitors it is the largest consumer fair in Bavaria.

 Consumenta Nuremberg is one of the largest and most successful trade fairs in Germany when it comes to communication between consumers and retailers, tradesmen, service providers, associations and organizations
The planning for the anniversary fair has been in full swing for months. Visitors to the Nuremberg exhibition center can look forward to an attractive anniversary program and a fascinating shopping and adventure world with a diverse range of topics, new events and interactive areas for adults and children. The trade fair organizers would like to thank the visitors for their long loyalty with promotions and great profit opportunities.

On the first day of the fair, all visitors aged 60 and over have free admission including an accompanying person. As in the early years of Consumenta, when it was still called “The shopping bag”, with a little luck you can win one of several shopping bags that are given out to visitors every day and are filled to the brim with gifts from the Consumenta exhibitors. The organizers would like to thank the Consumenta visitors for their loyalty. Visitors who visit the fair together with a friend only pay admission for one person on Girlfriends Day (October 29).



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