Optimize Format For Effective Multi-Media Viewing

According to a new report from Brand Perfect, considering global publishing for a digital generation, sales of tablets and smartphones will outstrip desktop sales by two to one, with tablets alone on target to do so in 2013. An independent analysis by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, smartphones are expected to reach more than 2 billion units by 2015, with the number of tablets tripling in the same timeframe to reach just fewer than 3 billion units.

The report, Adventures in Publishing, concludes that this expansion demonstrates the need for brands to focus their advertising strategies more heavily on these platforms. However, 93% of the publications reviewed in the report have yet to offer true multi-device viewing, yields the study. In the study, primary research focused on the current state of online consumer publishing across 100 top titles in the U.K., U.S. and Germany, and identified the fragmented nature of publishing channels today.

The research, in summary, shows that:

  • 93% of the leading consumer magazines surveyed do not offer readers complete cross-platform digital experiences.
  • HTML 5 (... the fifth revision of a markup language for structuring and presenting content for the World Wide Web; the standard to improve the language with support for the latest multimedia while easily readable by humans and consistently understood by computers and devices. (Wickipedia)) has the potential to take brands seamlessly across the web, whether accessed from the desktop, from a tablet, a smartphone or TV, but needs to be supported by all digital media.
  • Publishers have invested heavily in apps, yet many publishing apps have limited audiences and often require unique creative work from an advertiser. Many publishers are not providing user-friendly experiences for the mobile web, says the report. Even though sales of tablet computers and smartphones outstrip desktop sales by 2:1, many publishers are still resisting tackling the mobile web. Senior brand marketers have it within their grasp to be important agents for change, concludes the report.
  • Of the 78 consumer-facing English language publications detailed in the report, 83% have at least one app available in the Apple App Store, Newsstand app or the Google Play service. Of these, 65% have published iPhone apps and 40% have published apps for the Android platform. All 78 publish on the iPad device. However, only 25% of these were optimized for any form of tablet display, with most publishers using scaled-down versions of their desktop sites instead. Of the German titles reviewed, 10% are optimized for tablets. 38% of publications offer an iPhone-optimized option.

The first major limitation of the current ad server model, says the report, is that advertisers cannot be expected to supply a separate creative for each of the separate smartphones, tablets, laptops and desktop computers on the market. Either the advertising message is served exclusively to those devices for which suitable creative is provided, or the ad server may rescale the closest match to fit the new ad size, often with unpleasing results. In common instances, says the report, such as a banner designed for the desktop served to a smartphone and viewed at such a reduced size, that brand, images and copy become incomprehensible.

Ed Barnes, VP of Rich Media at AdTech suggests that “... brands could take the same approach as... publishers developing responsive or adaptive sites... and produce creative content once and use web standards (such as HTML 5) to ensure their advertising is served correctly... regardless of the device (on which it’s) encountered... ”

For a free copy of the report, Adventures In Publishing: The New Dynamics of Advertising, including the full results of the study, please access the link in the Business Wire release here.


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