Second Screen Experiences and Why They Work

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Nowadays more and more people are multitasking while watching TV in their living rooms and bedrooms. The laptop is open, the iPad is flipped up, and the smartphone is more of an experience than a phone. People are tweeting, get glueing, checking in, posting, and more. Why only watch a tv show, a sports game, or an event when you can experience more through the accompanying apps? 

Shows like Glee and Fringe have multiple hashtags through each episode so people can follow the conversation and join along on Twitter. Other shows, like HBO’s True Blood, have accompanying apps which go deeper into each episode. Then there are apps like Shazam, Get Glue, and Zeebox which bring even more to your fingertips through the app experience for multiple shows and movies.

Shazam: This app is known for “naming that tune,” but now it does even more. Brands and shows can integrate the app into programs and ads to create a call to action for the audience. And now it can also display information about the cast, buzz, gossip, links for trivia, and facts. Look out for the CTA on the corner of your screen – and see what’s in store from your favorite brands, shows, and more.

Get Glue: Like foursquare, fans have an opportunity to “check in” but this time it’s in TV shows. Fans can then reap rewards, chat with fellow fans, and receive “recognition” for their status. It’s basically a fun interactive way to be a part of your favorite shows and movies while watching. With over 2M users, this app demonstrates that brands shouldn’t pass this one by…it has potential to reach viewers where they are interacting during the show and/or viewing experience.

Zeebox: Funny name, great app – it’s like all the viewing apps in one experience. In short it’s an app that pertains to what you want to watch and what your friends are watching. It allows audience members to dig a little deeper into their shows through “zeetags” which appear during certain scenes and allow you to click for more info and insights into what’s happening. And of course it is also integrated with your social channels through both Facebook and Twitter and can even allow viewing parties with friends.

Why it matters? Brands have an opportunity to reach their target audience when they are most engaged with viewing and apps. Brands have the ability to optimize their ads with call to actions, partner with shows, sports games, and live events. For example, the Super Bowl had hashtags in every commercial — although this is a quick and simple CTA and click for engagement, it is a step closer. Brands who know how to move faster and take advantage are shows like I mentioned above. Will your brand be a leader in the second screen experience? Don’t be left behind – give your consumers rewards for engaging with your branded content when they want it and where they already are engaged.

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Photo credit: Ian Munroe