F. Scott Fitzgerald’s famous short story The Curious Case of Benjamin Button tells the story of a protagonist who ages in reverse, from an older man to an infant.
The majority of our products decline with value after use. A new car will depreciate in worth immediately after you drive it from the lot. As consumers, we’ve become used to this – a product is most valuable at the moment of purchase.
Professor of Marketing at NYU Scott Galloway believes we’re moving into the “Benjamin Button” economy. With technology companies leading the charge, we’re now seeing products become more valuable with time and increased use.
Think about the product offering from Spotify, Alphabet, Amazon, Facebook, and Netflix. Each increases in value with use because of artificial intelligence and the network effect. Google’s search algorithm improves with every use, and your Netflix experience is better with every watch.
What does this mean? To execute on this business model takes a sizable investment in technology. Traditional firms won’t be able to adapt overnight. I would expect companies to continue striving towards this model as the most successful, taking advantage of technology, continue to grow.