The digital era has meant near constant change for marketers trying to build their brands across media. Fragmentation has eroded many channels as others have gained audience. Questions around the optimal media mix still swirl around Internet marketing, even as time spent online grows inexorably every quarter. Now, as if advertisers and publishers didn’t have enough to deal with, our media and devices are competing with one another like never before. The multi-screen phenomenon started years ago when the computer became a household staple, picked up speed with the laptop and will hit nitro when the smartphone achieves critical mass among affluent consumers. With the arrival of the tablet, consumers have a tool that combines aspects of the computer and smartphone that can augment and even replace the traditional television experience. Today, it’s more likely than not that as someone is watching a television program, they’ve got another device in use or at the ready, waiting for a commercial break or simply a break in the action.
An audience that’s increasingly scattered and distracted may seem like a nightmare scenario for advertisers, but is it? This study—The Multi-Screen Marketer, set out to explore modern viewing habits with an emphasis on the true multi-device user. The goal was to discover the kinds of obstacles and opportunities that marketers are facing from this fundamental shift in how we watch and interact with media. The findings confirm that the media world is changing again...fast. It’s a world where there’s always a deficit of attention, but it’s also one where brands have the opportunity to go beyond passive viewing and have a meaningful interaction with consumers. The challenge will be keeping up with evolving habits while catering to eternal needs.