Multi-Screen Marketing: Still A Teenage Crush for Marketers

Consider this scenario. Couple of months back, I was on with the plans to gift my younger cousin a Mobile Phone for his Birthday. As I was leaving my home one day morning, I noticed the TV Ad for Xperia Z. Since I myself own one from the Xperia family, I got interested. While on the way to office, on my tablet I searched for specs and reviews of it. By the time I made it to office I had decided to buy it. Out came my laptop and I booked it online.

Second scenario. I was watching TV while having breakfast and noticed the trailer of 300: Rise of an Empire. I took out my smartphone, searched for the movie and read on with the details in Wikipedia and IMDB. After that, downloaded a wallpaper of the movie and set it as my Tablet Wallpaper.

So, what’s the common factor that you see here?

Ans– Screens. A number of them.

multi screen marketing

Multi-screen behavior is on the rise now, and drastically. Even while watching a cricket match, more time is spent tweeting about it than is actually spent watching the game on TV. Almost everyone is in front of a screen at one point of time or the other. From using mobile phones in the loo, to watching TV while having breakfast, to going mad with Angry Birds on your tablet while commuting, to relying on your laptop for all the office work. At any given time, there’s a screen in front of us.

multi screen viewing

And still, in this digital era of advancement, hardly any marketer is utilizing this opportunity wisely.

Arguably, the increase in the number of screens in a consumer’s life has been the biggest shift in consumer behavior we have seen in recent times. As shown in this 2 year old Google’s Report (which makes all the more sense now) onΒ β€œThe New Multi-screen World: Understanding Cross-Platform Consumer Behavior,” shown below, there are two primary ways we multi-screen.

  1. Sequential – Where we carry forth an activity from one screen to another, as I did while booking the mobile phone.
  2. Simultaneous – Where we use multiple screens at the same time. Similar to tweeting about a cricket match while watching it live on screen.

multi screen info graphic

From a marketer’s perspective, the audience can be divided into 3 tiers

  1. Two screen – TV and Smartphone
  2. Three Screen – TV, Smartphone and Laptop
  3. Four Screen – TV, Smartphone, Laptop and Tablet

Being able to integrate the activity of these different “screens” is where exactly the essence of “Integrated Marketing” lies, and not just Newspaper + TV + Digital. Integrated Marketing should be able to identify with each one of this individually and correlate. If, as an automobile dealer, am sending out Newspaper and TV Ads this week, then it’d be more effective I also run an Online Campaign at the same time. If all the three campaigns are targeted towards the same call to action, Bingo! That’s the perfect mix.

There’s still a great divide between Traditional Communication and Digital Communication, which leads to a very vague status for Integrated Marketing. It’s stunning to see that the audience always adapts to change and growth quickly, as compared to brands. Now, when consumers move from screen to screen ever so fluidly, marketers are drawing circles in the air on how to integrate it all up.

Though the user has matured and has found the love of his life, the marketers still seem to be in their adolescent stage running behind teenage crushes.

Many brands are getting on this bandwagon, but very few successfully. Looks like we’ll have to wait till the drama unfolds.

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