A new generation of smart devices has revolutionized the way people communicate, meet, get information, and view entertainment. With an always-on Internet, today’s consumers expect non-stop connectivity, on-demand programming, and digital content to be available any time, anywhere, on any screen. Consequently, Internet-connected TV is quickly gaining momentum as the big screen of choice for digital video and other Web-based entertainment.
The connected living room
According to Forrester, there are an estimated 37 million U.S. broadband-enabled households watching video content through their connected TVs, and the number of connected devices in the home is growing. Over the next five years, analysts at In-Stat expect that the majority of consumer electronics devices purchased -- including digital TVs, Blu-ray players and gaming consoles -- will be Web-enabled.
Simultaneously, Americans are watching more content across more devices. Multitasking on their smartphone, tablets and laptops, while watching their favorite shows on connected TV is becoming the new norm. In fact, Nielsen reports that 42 percent of tablet owners use them daily while they watch TV.
What does that mean for media buyers? This dual usage could open up a whole new set of opportunities for marketers as 19 percent of smartphone and tablet owners searched for product information and 16 percent looked up coupons or deals while the television was on. And as consumers become more and more comfortable with dual-purpose and social apps, the opportunities to reach them in a state of discovery will only increase.
The ad opportunity
So what’s the potential upside for advertisers and the brands they shepherd? First, it’s about the consumers. The connected living room is a great way to reach a valuable target -- families.
According to a recent PRIZM study by Nielsen, which represented 104 million households, connected TV is beginning to reach family-oriented adults with high incomes and young kids. The findings show:
* 16% have household incomes of $100,000 and over
* 41% are 35-54 years old
* 29% hold a Bachelors or Post Graduate Degree
* 30 of households have children
* 18% of households have 2 or more children
Next, the connected living room opens up a fantastic complement to traditional TV. A YuMe and Frank N. Magid & Associates survey noted that viewers are more engaged with online video ads than with television ads, with 58 percent of respondents saying they do things around the house when TV ads come on, versus 26 percent for ads online.
Although the market is nascent, advertisers that choose to leverage the shift to user-initiated, measurable advertising will gain advertising insights ahead of the competition.
Make it simple
Conceding that the connected TV ecosystem is still fragmented and complicated, what ad agencies need is a partner that can simplify the buying process. Who says exciting and new has to be difficult?