Are All Screens Created Equal?

September marks back to school time, and with a new school year comes new challenges for kids: new friends to make, first time on the bus, a new teacher, increased expectations, new school, new, new, new. All of this newness is seen as an exciting opportunity or an anxiety-ridden challenge to overcome. Digital media is facing a similar challenge.

There are new devices, new behaviors, new vendors, new creative experiences, new data available, and higher expectations from viewability to improve relevance. We are seeing the new hit hardest within the video space. More people are watching digital video over-the-top (OTT) or via mobile devices than on desktop. Estimates are as high as 60 percent in OTT and mobile versus desktop.

This change happened seemingly overnight, forcing media companies, advertisers, and measurement partners to rethink strategies and executions for digital video campaigns. The shift of video consumption to in-home or on-the-go devices creates an amazing opportunity for marketers. It has the potential to return advertising to a 100 percent share-of-voice medium, capturing the full attention of the consumer and leveraging sight, sound, and motion to convey the marketer’s message and invoke emotional connections.

Additionally, there are some less obvious benefits that shouldn’t be overlooked. With the constant hum and chatter surrounding fraud, ad blocking, and viewability, this one fell swoop virtually eliminates these terms from the conversation. How? By limiting messaging to an experience that calls for human engagement to launch the content experience, and ties the messaging to devices which require preliminary information like a phone number, email address, or login password.

This simple step not only reduces the risk of fraud, but it also provides new methods for delivering and sourcing brand studies, linking consumers to transactions or geographical locations. Furthermore, it enhances a marketer’s ability to provide advertising that is more relevant and welcomed over time.

Of course, moving to multiple devices for delivering video content and messaging isn’t wrought with challenges and issues. The fragmentation of screen size, technology, and capabilities are a serious concern. Most of the device platforms are not operating on an industry standard or protocol. This makes delivery, targeting, and measurement nearly impossible across all screen types. I’m sure this issue will be addressed over time. However, what is today’s marketer to do after the audience has left the desktop for the living room couch?

Here are a few suggestions to get off on the right path.

1. Understand Your Needs

Start by asking yourself:

  • What is really important to your brand? 
  • Do you want 100 percent share-of-voice? 
  • Is viewability your primary concern? 
  • Do you have video assets that are entertaining and engaging? 
  • Are you struggling to find new or younger audiences? 
  • Can you live without third-party measurements to justify ROI of spend? 

If you can answer “yes” to more than one of these questions, consider an all-screen video approach with your digital marketing.

2. Start Simple

When deploying a video campaign across screens, know what you are buying. Purchase select partners that are trusted and have proven experience. Create alignment between the creative formats on each device, making sure that the video experience is full-screen. Minimally, the content should be featured in a large format, and consumer engagement must be a requirement to allow the video to play. Don’t get distracted with interactive video or excessive targeting that you would have applied to a display buy.

3. Think Big

In just a few years, digital video will be as big as TV. Start now and do a lot of testing. Getting a full understanding of all the various platforms and experiences is critical to scale spend. Delivering a full-screen video experience on a 60″ TV that is targeted to a household with co-viewing, and having the ability to ultimately link this viewing back to a sale, is an exciting opportunity for digital marketers that are real and doable with time.

Following these easy steps can set you up to engage consumers, make advertising welcome, and deliver amazing results. The digital video revolution is upon us, and it will be experienced by everyone with a phone, smart TV, and Internet connection.

Let’s work together to make sure that this time, we don’t allow greed, stupidity, or technology stand in the way of an awesome consumer – and advertiser – experience! What do you think?

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