While the move from PC to laptop to mobile took some time, the transition from mobile to tablets and then to ‘phablets’ happened rapidly. The viewer is now present at all screens simultaneously, and it thus becomes important that content moves likewise.
These and several other trends related to the rise of multi screens were discussed by a panel of expert speakers at ad:tech 2014. They wereGurmit Singh, VP & MD, Yahoo India; Tarun Malik, Director &Head- Media &Cloud Services, South-west Asia, Samsung; Shubodip Pal, CMO, Micromax India; NiteshKripalani, EVP- New Media, BD &Digital, Sony Entertainment Television; Sandeep Aurora, Director- Marketing &Market Development, Intel South Asia. The session was moderated by SanjeevKapur, CMO & Head- customer franchise management, Citi (India).
Screen-agnostic is not the buzzword anymore since consumers are omnipresent on all screens simultaneously and seamlessly. It is thus a huge challenge for marketers to keep up with them and give them the customised content for each screen. “There has to be continuity and consistency in content across screens,” opined Gurmit Singh. He said that it wasn’t until the London Olympics that multi-screen happened on a large scale with measurability as well. He also stated that though the consumer is moving from one screen to another, as of now a huge majority of companies don’t have mobile content to offer to the consumer.
NiteshKripalani pointed out that to take advantage of this particular consumer behavior of multi-screen indulgence, real-time feedback is very crucial. “Take real-time feedback and take instant corrective measures,” he said. He added that the consumer will always be inclined to use the screen closest and most convenient to him, which is almost always the mobile.
Despite knowing that mobile is the screen to be at, most companies are not investing enough in content and distribution on the medium? Shubhdip Pal stated that it’s the ROI factor. “ROI is the biggest challenge in mobile and thus marketers shy away from it,” he said. He added that ROI should not be a governing factor and since all screens complement each other, marketers need to learn to use and leverage each screen to their own advantage.
The panel opined that there isn’t much time to ponder on issues like ROI or how much money to put on which screen since soon a new challenge will come to the fore. “The next big challenge would be attention span of audience on all these screens,” said Sandeep Aurora. He said the basis of all money to be invested should be the consuming pattern. Marketers need to observe how people are consuming content and work accordingly. From every angle, mobile seems to rule the consumer mind. Singh pointed out that our consumption patterns have changed drastically as have our daily habits. “We look at our mobile phones first thing after waking up. That is a drastic lifestyle change and marketers need to take it into account,” he added.
The panel was divided on whether TV as a screen is now in its last stages and whether mobile will not only supersede it, but make it redundant. Aurora said that is not going to happen. “Mobile might be taking over some forms of communication, but the larger screen would always be required. Even as habits are changing, they will not be completely shifting,” he stated.
The panel unanimously agreed that it’s only a matter of time when mobile-first strategy will be adopted by content creators and brands alike. The panel was speaking at ad:tech 2014 held in New Delhi on 21st March 2014.