The Rise of the Multi-Screen Phenomenon: What Multitasking Means for Digital Marketers

In Facts and Figures by MediaVision

multiple-screensIn the digital age of a two-second attention span, multi-screening has become more prolific than ever. As the name suggests, multi-screening refers to the use of multiple digital devices at once, for example, mobile phones and the television. Sequential screening occurs when you move between devices, whilst simultaneous screening involves the use of two devices at the same time.

The Stats

The humble television set is now the device least likely to hold our attention, as viewers commonly use mobiles, tablets or laptops while they’re watching. Indeed, 77% of television viewers use another device at the same time.

According to this Google Insights study:

  • 90% of our media interactions are screen-based
  • This interaction is spread across 4 main devices – mobiles, tablets, computers and televisions
  • On average, we use around 3 different screen combinations per day
  • Activities performed during multi-screen usage in order of popularity include emailing, browsing, social networking, gaming, work-related activity and watching videos.
  • Television shows and adverts are a major contributor to search queries that take place on smartphones and tablets.


What Does This Mean for Marketers?

  • Advertisers need to understand their audience, and more importantly, understand how they make use of these different digital channels. Furthermore, content needs to be tailored and enhanced for these various devices – users turn to a specific device for a specific reason. Context needs to be taken into account, and users need to be kept engaged, no matter what device they may be using.
  • When taking into account television advertising, marketers need to be aware that users are most probably using another device simultaneously. Their digital marketing strategy, therefore, needs to be adapted accordingly and complement their television presence. Strategies can include the gamification of television ads, creating incentives for watching adverts, encouraging conversation on social media through the use of hash tags, and providing users with multi-screen extras, such as an interactive mobile application that corresponds with the message delivered in their television adverts.
  • E-commerce needs to be optimised across all devices. If you’re selling a product, make the process as simple and streamlined as possible for your customers. For example, allowing users to save the contents of their shopping carts means that they can carry on with the purchasing process across different devices without having to start all over again.
  • Mobile marketing can no longer be ignored. With 38% of our daily media interactions taking place on a smartphone, businesses need to optimise their content for mobiles and ensure that their digital presence allows them to be easily found when searched for.

In order to implement an effective marketing campaign, advertisers need to focus on integrating their cross-channel marketing, understand their evolving audience behaviour and digital usage, keep them entertained, and make it as easy as possible for consumers to accomplish their e-commerce transactions.

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