We live in the time of technology. Everybody and their 4th grader has TVs, laptops, smart phones, notebooks, iPods, tablets, smart TVs, desktops… Whatever! You name it, if it has a screen you can probably search, create, or watch content on it. Because of our technology and gadget driven lifestyle, a trend has emerged which is called ‘multi-screen viewing.’
It is a pretty self-explanatory term, but let me ask: How many screens do you have on you right now? Most likely you are reading this blog post on a computer screen, or perhaps a computer that is plugged into a larger screen like a television. Maybe your phone is on the table next to you, lighting up or even in your hands right now while you sit reading. Maybe you’re reading this on your tablet, while doing your homework on a laptop, while also watching TV in the background! I think you get the point.
Ninety percent of our media consumption occurs in front of a screen. The reality is that it has become normal for most people to be using more than one screened device at one time, in order to achieve multiple goals.
Studies have shown that there are a few reasons why people are using more than one device at a time. These reasons include playback problems, productivity, time and space, and information flow. People own and use multiple devices in order to stay connected anywhere at any time. In 2012 ThinkWithGoogle.com conducted a study on multi-screen viewing, which you can check out here. This research delves into consumers motives, how they use multiple screens, and how activities on one screen may impact another among several other research goals.
Marketers know that multi-screen viewing is relevant, so in order to keep with the times and engage viewers, we see companies taking advantage of all sorts of platforms. This enables consumers to connect on a broader level with companies and the products that they want.
For example, you may be watching your favorite TV show that is displaying a tag in the bottom corner of the screen. This indicates to viewers that they are able to follow along with an interactive stream of content that is online, most likely a social networking site such as Facebook or Twitter, and it is most likely this occurs simultaneously on another device.
For more information on muliti-screen viewing check out this video of a panel of industry professionals at the 2013 Abu Dhabi Media Summit, discussing multi-screen viewing in regards to television more in depth.
I will be attending the NAB Show next week and hope to learn more about how the entertainment industry is adapting to this new viewing model. Monetization is an important aspect of the multi-screen viewing industry and companies are in the processes of developing new coordinated ways to reach consumers on multiple screens.
– Paige Buns