Will 2015 be the year of second screen advertising?

Consumers can expect to see more linked messages in 2015, with ads on TV being backed up by an increasing number of second screen advertising.

According to Millward Brown’s first annual Digital & Media Predictions, these reminder and reinforcement messages on digital devices, including desktops, laptops, mobiles and tablets are vital. In 2015 Millward Brown expects more advertisers to take advantage of the opportunity to target their online and social media advertising in this way.

The study also states that marketers should feel encouraged that an increasing number of consumers now use multiple devices while watching TV and this is sometimes to learn more about the shows and commercials they see. The second-screen advertising syncing typically uses listening technology to identify when an advert has run on TV and immediately delivers advertising messages to run on digital devices.

“Second-screen syncing isn’t just about media efficiency and hitting consumers with multiple messages, it’s also a new storytelling opportunity that allows brands to add extra value for people who just watched their TV spot,” Duncan Southgate, global brand director, digital at Millward Brown said.

Millward Brown’s 2014 global AdReaction study also showed that 35% of all screen time involves simultaneous usage of TV and a digital device. However, consumers are far more likely to be using their digital screen for activity unrelated to TV. Currently, just 11% of multiscreen users proactively use a digital device to follow up on a TV ads. Hence using the new technology to make the cross-screen connection on behalf of consumers will help reinforce the power of their broadcast messages.

In addition to improving the effectiveness of messaging, second-screen synching also allows brands to initiate a more in-depth dialogue with consumers.

“For example, an automotive advert on TV could be followed up just seconds after the commercial ends with an offer to arrange a test drive, or a story line from the advert could be continued online with a call to action delivered direct to mobiles and tablets. Global auto brand, Hyundai, is using this technology today,” said Southgate.

Second-screen synching can be used to hijack competitor ads by running targeted digital counter-claims at the same time as a competitor’s TV ad. It also offers complementary brands the chance to cross-promote products; viewers of a TV ad for vodka might, for example, subsequently see an ad for a suitable mixer drink on their digital device.

“With media channels evolving at breakneck speed, marketers are well served by exploring new innovations – like second-screen synching – and the unknown,” Southgate added.

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