News & Views

Multi-screen Marketing in 2014

by Contagious Contributor
Adapting to the multi-screen landscape will be the major challenge for marketers and brands in 2014.  Millward Brown’s Global Brand Director for Digital, Duncan Southgate, reviews the 12 multi-screen trends that Millward Brown experts around the world think should be top of mind for the New Year 

1. Screen Agnosticism 
Screen Agnosticism – both in the way that consumers watch video content and the mind-set marketers need to adopt when planning video campaigns – will be critical in 2014. Audiences will consume video content by whichever means is most convenient at a given moment and so advertisers will need to optimise their campaigns to maximise audience against this behaviour. 

2. Micro-video multiplies 
Micro-video will continue to explode in 2014. In the short term the space will continue to be dominated by Vine (six-second films), thanks to the fact that it largely popularised the format; Instagram (15 seconds) due to its already massive userbase; and Tumblr GIFs due to the extreme resurgence in the format’s popularity. Most branded micro-video content will initially be shared virally, but paid promotional approaches generating more scale will soon start to emerge.

3. The breakthrough of wearable screens
Wearable technology threatens to break out from the margins into the mainstream. The process will continue to be led by the growing health and fitness market. More broadly, Google Glass, Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch and perhaps Apple’s long-rumored ‘iWatch’ will slowly change wearable devices from 'nice to have' tech into 'something I need'.

4. Multi-screen Big Data 
To generate marketing effectiveness insight, marketers need windows into the specifics of each consumer’s interactions with each screen for each brand. In 2014, the technology to tie together the pieces of the multi-screen effectiveness puzzle will be leveraged on a much wider scale than in the past.  

5. Multi-screen minimalism 
In 2014 less will be more.  With consumers taking just 1/20th of a second to make decisions on the appeal of digital stimuli, brands will adopt a more crisp and clean advertising aesthetic in order to succeed across screens. Our eye-tracking data for digital display ads suggests that just one appealing visual is enough to attract attention. 

6. Meshing, stacking and shifting
Marketers will start to tailor marketing efforts to the different types of multi-screen media consumption. 'Meshing' – the simultaneous usage of multiple devices for related content – 'Stacking' – the simultaneous usage of multiple devices for unrelated content – and 'Shifting' – sequential usage of multiple devices for related content – will all be behaviors advertisers seek to better understand and plan for.

7. Online and offline insights finally get together
2014 will finally see the marriage of online and offline insight. Marketers will have integrated data to understand the role of each touch point on the consumer path to purchase, across all channels and all digital devices. They will then be able to segment that path to purchase data to derive valuable insights to guide marketing investment decisions.

8. Social TV’s promise is tight targeting across screens 
Twitter will continue to define social TV in the immediate future and will increasingly monetize its domination of this space. One way they will do this is by introducing additional TV-audience-based targeting opportunities so that brands can reach show audiences long after the event itself.

9. Teen smartphone users demand bespoke ads
Smartphones are already the hub of young consumers’ lives, so youth-focused brands will lead the field in providing a seamless multi-screen experience. Successful youth-targeted mobile ads will be noticeably different from conventional TV or online ads to demonstrate that the brand is on-trend and up to date.

10. Video budgets continue to shift from TV to multi-screen
As marketers plan for multi-screen video success, this will drive other changes: video advertising will be created to work well for all screens, not just for TV, organizations will merge TV and digital media buying and there will be an increasing focus on optimizing cost-effective reach.  

11. The rapidly developing digital outdoor marketplace
In 2014 we will ask what is a screen? New for next year will be clothing woven with flexible LED thread and flexible processors built in that can deliver messages and capture data (Nike is already experimenting with this), and LED covered taxis that geo-locate to deliver messages relevant to the neighborhood they pass through. 

12. Success will not go to those who focus on screens alone
Millward Brown CrossMedia Research often shows that the biggest synergies arise between screen and non-screen media, such as posters, Print and especially Point of Sale. Stand-alone screen media do also perform well but marketers who think beyond 'screens' and implement truly integrated multi-channel strategies will be the biggest winners in 2014.

Download the full report of Millward Brown’s digital and media predictions for 2014 here: