The Future of Media in the Era of the Highly Engaged Consumer

  • by September 30, 2011
The future of Media won't center on the next generation of formats (though undoubtedly we'll see new formats continue to emerge). It's not about local, mobile, or social either. Media's future requires a true redefinition of its role, objectives, and level of accountability in the era of The Highly Engaged Consumer.

While consumers are busier than ever, they also are more heavily engaged. They're on their mobile devices day and night. And one thing is clear - when they are researching a specific product or service from these devices, they are ready to buy.

These consumers research a brand because they have an urgent need, and they're looking to address it while on-the-go. It may be scheduling an immediate home service request; signing up for a new credit card before a big vacation; even shopping for a car.

Through mobile devices, consumers can quickly assess - at a high level - the information they need to make a decision, making them even more determined to buy RIGHT NOW. Getting to the finish line just isn't intuitive, personalized, or easy as it could be for these highly engaged buyers. Why?

Buyers need more details. They have specific questions. And they simply cannot find all the answers through mobile research. To make matters worse, when they select the 'Call Now' feature from their phones, the experience starts all over, forcing consumers to spend more time restating their needs to an operator who has no insight into who the customer is, where they came from (eg mobile or desktop), and how that impacts their propensity to buy.

Why the disconnect? Because media's work ends once a stimulus is created. Nurturing the consumer - from stimulus all the way through to purchase - becomes a different department's responsibility, and this lack of multi-channel consistency creates high frustration and high abandonment rates across-the-board.

Media's future depends on making it easier for consumers to take action - while on-the-go, while highly engaged, and while multi-tasking like never before. How can digital media strategies evolve to create truly seamless experiences - -from initial media impression through to websites and call centers -- to create targeted, data-rich experiences that drive purchases?

The future of media depends on crafting the right experience to convert high-intentioned shoppers into high-value customers, no matter the channel.

Jason Wadler, Executive Vice President, Leapfrog Online

1 comment about "The Future of Media in the Era of the Highly Engaged Consumer".
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  1. Doug Garnett from Protonik, LLC, October 3, 2011 at 4:46 p.m.

    I question whether modern consumers are any more engaged. Truth is that consumers have always engaged on important decisions - just it wasn't with the opportunity for instant access to media.

    So they're not more engaged, but does access to instant media change things? Some. But not nearly as much as this claims.

    The other flaw in this theory is that in most of the actions consumers take close to purchase, they want independent sources - not company or brand sponsored. This is a critical distinction...

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