The Multi-Screen Majority - Preserving Consumer Advertising Relevancy and Control

July 9, 2014

This post is another in a series of summaries from our recent Digital Advertising Alliance Summit 2014.

A panel keynote session at the 2014 DAA's Annual Summit, "The Multi-Screen Majority — Preserving Consumer Advertising Relevancy and Control," offered interesting perspective on how the proliferation of digital devices and their multiple and simultaneous use by consumers is changing the landscape for online advertising.

It's no secret that consumers are increasingly using a combination of multiple devices to view digital content in their daily lives. The continuous rise in the use of these multiple devices has created a new terrain for online advertisers to navigate, especially as it relates to keeping up with the evolving technology while trying to provide a personalized experience for the consumer. The DAA keynote session underscored the reality that the changing landscape presents an enormous opportunity for advertisers and for consumers' convenience, but first digital advertisers must understand the profile of the multi-screen environment and the implications for their efforts to preserve and improve relevant advertising.

One important point made: it is a business imperative that digital advertisers have a solid understanding of consumer activity and use of digital devices via multiple screens. According to moderator Mike Zaneis, who is executive vice president & general counsel with the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), recent IAB research, surveying mobile sports fans, revealed that 37 percent of respondents positively interact with mobile ads while 35 percent use both mobile and TV simultaneously.

It is this very imperative that is behind DAA's two forthcoming mobile choice tools: AppChoices (an app that will allow consumers to opt-out of interest-based ads served across apps) and our mobile-optimized Web Consumer Choice Page. These tools will set the stage for how brands can engage with the multi-screen majority in a privacy-friendly way.

Mark Donovan, chief marketing officer, with comScore, an internet technology company that measure consumers' online activity, recommended that advertisers focus on making audiences and ads more valuable by trying to understand audiences and what they're doing. comScore looked at US data and the share of page traffic across multiple devices and found that mobile devices are a constant companion to other devices. Its research also found that users are spending more time online in general. For example, time spent with digital increased by 20 percent in 12 months with all the increase in mobile devices. The bottom line: mobile devices are increasingly popular among consumers but they are being used along with other devices – hence the multi-screen use.

Jack Krawczyk, director of product innovation at Pandora, honed in on this point as he outlined goal to bring streaming music and programming to automobiles – one-third of all new cars sold in U.S. will have Pandora installed. Being everywhere the consumer wants content is part of Pandora's DNA – mobile by default: 80 percent of Pandora installations are on iOS and Droid devices.

Greg Crockart, co-President, Joule, a mobile advertising agency that is part of WPP, indicated that his firm is constantly testing how consumers interact with their devices, and how the personalization of media consumption – every Twitter user, every Pandora user experiences the platforms differently – creates demand for relevant content, including the ad messages they may see on these platforms and devices.

DAA was heartened to have these brand, ad tech and agency perspectives shared at the Summit. This is where the rubber hits the road for DAA Principles – with transparency and control now in practice, and our AppChoices (for interest-based ads across apps) and mobile-optimized Consumer Choice Web page (for interest-based ads on the mobile Web) soon to come.

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