The multitasking media consumer

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As the multitasking consumer population grows and technology evolves, a brand's survival depends on extending a consumer's emotional connection to advertising through multi-screen engagement.
 
“If we want to develop these deep personal experiences whether it's through content or advertising experiences, we have to follow the consumers across the four screens [television, laptop, smartphone and tablet],” Patrizio Spagnoletto, VP of b-to-b marketing of the Americas at Yahoo, told attendees at Advertising Week's Yahoo Connect Forum on Oct. 5 in New York.
 
In addition to showcasing a new tablet-based advertising product at the forum, Spagnoletto discussed how difficult it can be – and how necessary it is – for marketers to continually adapt to new technology. “We know that it's not easy to keep up with what's coming our way. I think most of us just got used to digital and thinking about everything from rich ads to paid search,” he said. “As soon as we get comfortable with that, there are whole new platforms coming into our space.” In spite of the learning curve involved, marketers must use new technology as mechanisms to not only deliver content but advertising experiences, he said.
 
A comScore MobiLens report released earlier this year said that the smartphone adoption rate has grown 53% year-over-year to approximately 80 million users, noted Edwin Wong, director of market research at Yahoo.
 
Yahoo and Razorfish further examine multitasking consumer behavior in their "Outlook" report, which is slated for release later this month.
 
That study found that 80% of the 3,000 mobile users surveyed use a mobile device while watching TV, for a total of 98 million TV multitaskers. According to the report, 52% of consumers are disappointed when companies don't have mobile sites, but 79% of large advertisers still don't have a mobile-optimized site.
 
Part of the reason so much multitasking is going on is that people have an emotional connection to their mobile devices, Wong said, citing a case study by anthropologist Amber Case.
 
“She speaks to the fact that the mobile device is the very first thing that is just not enabling us physically, but mentally,” Wong said. “She thinks that these devices are more appendages as opposed to devices.”
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