Friday, August 21, 2020

AFLUENDOR! It's Phygital!

Yea, put your dictionaries away, it's not exactly a word found in everyday parlance.

I have to be honest, I was pretty conflicted by this concept. I like to think that there is room for new ideas, and anyone with the sand to plant their flag in defiance of accepted convention is to be applauded. 

I was forwarded this (below) article by a colleague in the Fourth Estate from Watch Pro, and after reading Ariel Adam's delightfully myopic (and dare I say it) sorta' hypocritical view on watch brands paying influencers for coverage, I then came upon this -

Watch Pro - Afluendor

Now that you've read that report, I thought it might be worthwhile to unpack it.

Let's start with the name - Afluendor.  And what in the Wide World of Sports does that mean?  Per BA111OD:

A phygital concept based on a customer-centric vision, which is no longer "final". We consider our clients as Ambassadors, inFLUENCER and venDOR: AFLUENDOR


Okay, so let's unpack the unpack -
Phygital - I'm not saying I'm the smartest guy in the world, but I am also pretty sure that I am not the dumbest. Having said that, I had to double-check with my good friend in Switzerland who has his finger on the pulse of the start-up world and he confirmed my suspicion - Phygital essentially is combining Physical with Digital - Get it grandpa?

Sooooo -
It sounds as if BA111OD is staying true to its DNA by being disruptive with resolutely modern aplomb!
Editor's Note - yes, that is sarcasm.
In fairness, it is a nice enough looking watch, and it is certainly competitively priced. For those of you ready to embrace your inner AFLUENDOR,
you can check it out on your own here, and make your own determinations -


Now if it stopped there, i.e. this is our watch, then fair enough. Watch Town is littered with less-than-great copywriting that frequently wilts in translation. But I have to say that things took a turn for me.  Because apart from truly baffling naming conventions, the process for buying a BA111OD encourages you to not merely be a customer, but to be an ambassador!  And hey, while you're at it?  Could you maybe help them sell a few of these?  And the WIIFM (What's in it for me)?  You'll earn tokens!
Courtesy of L.A. Metro
Say what?

Essentially, you buy a watch.  
And then?  
You become part of the exclusive community! 
I'm sorry, but they might have overplayed their usage of the word exclusive. The only thing exclusionary seems to be your willingness to part with 380 Swiss francs to get one of their watches.  

And in the words of that other great commentator on the watch industry Ron Popeil -
"But wait, there's more!"
Shamelessly borrowed from the world-wide infoweb
By purchasing your watch, you receive 4 tokens and then you, Mr or Ms Ambassador then grant that token to someone that (I assume) you deem worthy of joining this growing exclusive community.  And once you successfully "invite" 4 people to buy a watch, then you get a second one for free.  A second watch, not a token ; )

So let's review that sequence.  You buy a watch, you get 4 tokens that you then pass on to 4 people, so that they can purchase a watch of their own, and get 4 tokens that they can grant to 4 different people that they feel are worthy of joining this continually growing exclusive community, who can then purchase a watch of their own, and get 4 tokens that they can grant to 4 different people that they feel are worthy of ...

I think you get the idea, it's not unlike those ads I remember in the back of comic books extolling the virtues of "not selling" to friends to win valuable prizes -
I appreciate that life is not static, and that it moves forward.  I also respect anyone willing to put themselves out there and launch a new venture, and for the record, if the AFLUENDOR concept proves to be the future, I will sit in a corner wearing a funny hat.  

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