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Published On: Tue, Dec 5th, 2017

Article: Getting Consumers' Attention Across Every Screen They Have at Home

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Matthew Fanelli
Senior Vice President, Digital
MNI Targeted Media

Consumers have more screens in the home than ever before, which allows cross-platform video advertising to have more reach. But today’s fragmented media landscape makes it more difficult to capture consumers’ attention. eMarketer’s Sean Creamer spoke with Matthew Fanelli, senior vice president of digital at MNI Targeted Media (Time Inc.’s media planning division), about how marketers can create more engaging, immersive video advertising campaigns that utilize all of the screens in consumers’ homes.

eMarketer: About how many screens are in consumers’ homes today?

Matthew Fanelli: There are 13 connected devices per North American household, according to the IHS Markit report from June 2016. Reading this, I thought, “How is this possible?” But looking at my wife and kids, we all have a laptop, tablet and iPhone, every TV in my house is a connected TV and with new screens like the Nest thermostat, that quickly adds up to 13.

eMarketer: How are marketers utilizing these screens differently?

Fanelli: Connected TVs are at the top of the funnel within the household, but brands use different messaging on mobile devices to provide an opportunity to transact.

eMarketer: Is it any easier to grab consumers’ attention now due to the saturation of screens?

Fanelli: Advertising clutter from messages, platforms and screens is at an all-time high, and having so many screens creates lower attention spans in consumers. Marketers want to break through that and deliver a concise, immersive message to a household.

eMarketer: Is there a secret to breaking that attention-span barrier?

Fanelli: Wi-Fi connections allow for complete brand immersion within a household. Marketers can use a household’s Wi-Fi to deliver specific messages to connected TVs, smartphones, tablets and laptops. When consumers see a multitude of exposures to a particular brand or service, it actually starts to move the needle.

When cross-platform campaigns are executed in a streamlined, unobtrusive manner and utilize all of the screens in a house, they can break through the clutter. The cross-platform video mechanism gives marketers the ability to spread brand messaging in a concise way.

eMarketer: With cord-cutting rates rising, is the role of the television screen changing for consumers?

Fanelli: According to research I’ve seen, 57 million people will cut the cord by the end of the year. But since TV manufacturers all produce connected TVs, the TV has become just another screen in the home to streaming content on. For instance, coveted audiences like millennials use Hulu and Netflix to stream content to their connected TVs.

eMarketer: What effect has this trend of big-screen streaming had in the cross-platform advertising space?

Fanelli: Most marketers are siphoning off their traditional TV budget to do more digital video execution. Unique shows like Hulu’s “The Handmaid’s Tale” are winning awards, and it’s a completely different model and mechanism for marketers to work with.

Due to trends like this, marketers are going down the path to digital video ad buys and connected television buys, vs. having traditional TV budgets that put a ton of money toward brand awareness. This still exists, but spend is shifting.

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