While surfing with the laptop while watching TV has been around for roughly 10 years now, the true multiscreen customer experience is in its infancy, evolving in just about the past 18 months.
This increasingly varied consumer experience marks a permanent sea change in buying behavior with deep implications for response marketing. Multiscreen experiences are defined as simultaneous, sequential, and independent multiscreen usage throughout the day across laptops, smartphones, tablets, and TV. Innovations in smartphones, tablets, and television sets are enabling new consumer behavior that simply couldn’t exist as recent as a year and a half ago.
Smartphones Reach the Tipping Point
Smartphones continue their drive toward ubiquitous adoption that has forever changed the way consumers respond to marketing and interact with brands. Given the following fact, it’s astonishing to think that smartphones are only 6 years old:
- In Q2 of 2012 smartphones began to outpace feature phone sales (Chaten Sharma, Aug 2012). It’s interesting to note that worldwide the figure is closer to one third (Gartner, Aug 2012).
- There are 100,000,000+ smartphone owners in the U.S. (comScore, Mar 2012)
- 9% of internet page views now occur on smartphones (comScore, August 2012). One would expect this figure to at least double once total smartphone penetration starts to approach 100%.
- 64% of smartphones are on Android (Gartner, Aug 2012) which launched its first device as recently as October 2008.
The implications for response marketing are numerous. Crafting digital assets for mobile viewing moves from “important,” to “critical.” The type of offers and response we ask from consumers needs to adjust as well. While media continue to evolve, the time-honored truism that “The medium is the message” remains relevant. What you can realistically expect a consumer to do on a phone is just different than in a larger-screen media environment.
One example: requesting a quote for a financial or insurance product may make sense on a phone, but applying is not really likely. Offers to download assets need to be rethought. Links to videos may be even more attractive, when you think about where a person is while surfing via a phone, compared to a tablet, viewing TV, or engaging via a laptop or desktop unit – especially when we consider how those last two are morphing into the Smart TV.
Your consumer’s age comes into play as well. It’s not only relevant to adoption of technology, but how younger and older eyes vary relating to what we reasonably expect them to do, as well as how we design any offer we make via the phone screen.
And that’s just a first-blush consideration of how this single medium works. Next time, we look at Tablets, TV, and how it all fits together.