Mobile Day 2013

May 14, 2013 Pivotal Labs

The details of mobile marketing can be tedious and repetitive. Mobile Day, hosted by the Canadian Marketing Association, aims to snap marketers out of their daily routine and remind them of the power and effect of mobile marketing. We sponsored and attended Mobile Day 2013, as well as presented. Our Senior Director of Strategic Alliances, Aron Levitz, moderated a panel titled, “Optimizing User Experience for the Multi-Screen,” with panelists representing Bell, TELUS, and The Globe and Mail.

Overall, second screen is still a new topic to most marketers, despite being one of the most important developments in marketing. The reason we say this: second screen doesn’t necessarily mean you’re watching television and another screen simultaneously. The Globe and Mail, for example, has the personal computer as its main screen and the mobile phone as its second.

The primary experience, whatever it happens to be, is the main screen. The second screen supplements or enhances it. Levitz summarized it succinctly when he surveyed the audience about who had used Facebook or Twitter during this panel; nearly all of them had, and he pointed out that in this case he was the main screen and the mobile phone is the second screen.

As the varying tablet usage indicates, second screen still needs to be tailored to a specific audience that marketers want to reach. For example, the panelist from Bell mentioned that he had different objectives, and approaches, for every media property that he managed. There really is no such thing as, “One size fits all.” Instead, strategy needs to be understood before development begins. As we see it, there are three methods to run with in a second screen strategy:

The 3 Types of Second Screen Approaches:

1. Lean back:

In this case, the second screen provides more context or information about the experience taking place on the main screen. For example, viewers could be watching an interview, and more information about the subject or the interviewee would be popping up on their second screens (e.g., articles, bio, etc.).

2. Lean forward:

This approach to second screen involves interacting with the second screen as viewers watch the main screen. This could happen in game shows, where trivia is played along with the show.

3. Asynchronous:

An asynchronous second screen contributes to the experience when the main screen is not active; for example, a second screen that syncs up to where users left off in a video clip or a newspaper article. The asynchronous second screen continues the experience when users are away from the screen or deactivated.

The audience – mostly marketers – understood the importance of creating a second-screen experience. Going forward, they learned how they can get more out of the infrastructure that already exists in order to capitalize on the opportunities represented by implementing a compelling second-screen strategy.

From our perspective, the feedback we received and the other presentations we viewed reinforced how powerful and meaningful mobile marketing can be. We look forward to continuing down the path of using mobile to create ways for marketers to reach a broader audience.

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