September 18, 2012

The Connected Viewer - The End of Disengaged TV Advertising

Many advertisers were worried about the impact that DVR would have on TV ads. Guess what!

The Connected Viewer is changing TV ad consumption.

Going by the growing multi-screen trend, loss of TV viewers from second screen viewing to advertisers is way bigger than the DVR. If consumers are spending time on a second screen, it is quite obvious that the impact of traditional advertising is getting smaller. And this behavior of tuning out from TV ads (generally due to lack of engagement) will only get worse!

So how can advertisers address this changing behavior?

Understanding the “Connected Viewer”

First and foremost, advertisers must understand that in the era of digital consumerism, consumers will always have the upper hand. This war cannot  be won by traditional media and neither by old marketing techniques. Also they should stop fretting about consumers using the latest technologies. In a world where every thing and person will ultimately be interconnected, what advertisers should really attempt to do is try and understand the underlying consumer behaviors and how to leverage them instead of fighting them.

Derived from a recent report's findings, three key consumer behaviors have been observed in the context of the "connected viewer". TV viewers are primarily using web, social or mobile medium to -

1. Validate content seen on TV

2. Look for more information and interact with online content

3. Start or join a discussion and sharing reactions with friends

So if consumers are willing to enjoy content at their own time (i.e. time shifting trend enabled by the DVR) and are open to sharing content with their friends while watching TV (i.e. connected viewing trend enabled primarily by mobile devices), why not create an experience that will leverage both these trends within the context of your brand campaign.

Here are two ways for advertisers to leverage these behaviors:

1. Start a conversation on TV, but sustain engagement beyond TV - Television ads should be a starting point for a conversation with your consumers. Incentivise (i.e. show them value) to visit a dedicate campaign site whenever they want - where they can find more information, discuss your product or service, and make it easy for them to share with their friends. That way brands can earn media in the process. Ensure that your site can be easily found on Google or Bing and is mobile-compliant.

2. Make your storytelling media agnostic - While the content of your story will always be a constant, the delivery mechanism is becoming more complex with the explosion of media channels and customer touchpoints. So effectively tailor your message depending on the channel. In this case, communicating to mass audiences on television is dramatically different from mobile storytelling - that provides opportunities for brands to not only interact with their consumers but also tell stories to far more targeted groups in the connected digital world. Be effective and consistent with your campaign story. Remember your story starts when the consumer starts watching the ad on TV and may continue anywhere, at any time, on any device.

Can you think of any other changing consumer behaviors in the context of TV viewing? Do you have any other ideas to leverage these behaviors?


  1. The whole article is wonderful and informative. Really the blog post is truly inspiring. Thanks for sharing and keep up writing.
    TV Advertisement Agency in Indore


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