Media Zach Attack: Where Consumer Media Consumption is Headed

By Zach Cochran

How will advances in technology affect how advertisers plan consumer media?

Smart money bets on smartphones as usage of these puppies has increased dramatically in the last five years. Some projections suggest that by 2014 mobile Internet usage could overtake desktop Internet usage. That will shift the way marketers try to reach their target audiences and how traditional advertising, such as television, will format their programming.

For the rest of 2013 we believe TV networks will make efforts to connect their traditional programs with a second screen in a way that can reinforce both types of media. And who can blame them? Studies show that currently 86% of mobile Internet users are using their devices while watching TV. Perhaps Bravo paved the way for other networks with the “Top Chef” companion “Last Chance Kitchen” an on-demand and online series that places contestants eliminated from Top Chef against each other for a chance to get back on the main show. Another expectation is to see traditional TV shows using live results on screen from polling conducted through mobile Apps or online.

In 2012, we saw more advertising dollars migrate from traditional media formats to online and mobile. Longstanding publications such as Newsweek moved away from print to an online-only format. Online is simply able to provide more trackable data than traditional media. Marketers continue to exert pressure to receive detailed measurements on how their media is performing, and traditional media has always struggled to provide this.

So how will this affect television the rest of the year? Despite the shift, TV still has its grip on the bulk of ad spending. In 2013 we should see a larger shift in advertising dollars out of TV to other media, unless one of the big four networks (ABC, NBC, FOX and CBS) can develop a way to provide total measurement that will demonstrate proven audiences for programs across TVs, mobile devices and computers. With time ticking away until the big four networks show off their new shows and ideas, we should see if any rabbits are pulled out of a hat soon. Stay tuned!