Watching It All: Integrated Multidevice Media Experiences

I was surprised by one fact I read earlier this week in my daily Jack Myers Business Report e-mail subscription, an article titled Myers Emotional Connections Study on Brand Value of TV Programs & Networks. It stated that “sixty percent of adults acknowledge visiting the websites of TV shows while they are watching the shows.” My astonishment was not that people use their television and computer concurrently, but that there are that many people already doing it. It seems that we have really have turned the corner towards an era of integrated multidevice media experiences. With people (especially younger demographics) utilizing more than one media device concurrently, it’s only natural that programming originating on one device will extend into other devices that people are using. We’ve seen an increasing number of multidevice content programming over the past year, and integrated television and online is only one part of the story. Of course, everyone remembers 41M people voted for the American Idol winner this past May via SMS on their mobile device. Some would argue that these examples are really just a manifestation of the limitations of television – its lack of interactivity – but I would contend that multidevice experiences are here to stay as media consumer attention is increasingly spread across numerous digital outlets. In addition, some one-screen-to-many experiences like digitial signage and stadium jumbotrons necessitate numerous input devices for a multitude of simultaneous users.

Regardless, these experiences result in higher consumer involvement with the content than a traditional linear (or even one-device online/mobile) experience. And if that’s true for the programming itself, then marketers cannot be far behind. With advertisers talking about engagement and struggling to find it when consumers have divided attention spans, it seems natural that marketing campaigns will follow the same format. If you can’t beat ‘em, then join ‘em, and the sooner the better. Today’s inFocus iMedia article provides a good set of tactical tips for advertisers who are employing an intergrated television and online campaign. As people pay attention to an increasing number of devices, they are in greater control of what they view, but it’s only natural that both the content and advertising will extend with their consumption habits.

David Beisel

David Beisel is a co-founder and Partner at NextView Ventures. He has been focused on early stage Internet startups his entire career, both as an entrepreneur and venture capitalist. As an investor in the digital media space, David was most recently a Vice President at Venrock and previously a Principal at Masthead Venture Partners. Prior to becoming a venture capitalist, David co-founded Sombasa Media, an e-mail marketing company best known for its flagship product BargainDog. Sombasa was successfully acquired by where David served as Vice President of Marketing. David holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and an AB in Economics, magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, from Duke University. He also founded and leads the Boston Innovators Group, an organization which holds quarterly entrepreneur events drawing a thousand attendees.