Jonathan Laor

Jonathan Laor

CEO & Co-Founder

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Audience Behavior 101: with a media app, you’re in control.

November 07, 2017


Audiences are using new technology to rewrite the rules of media. Unless you know the rules you will lose them.

Over half of millennials worldwide spend at least three hours a day glued to their smartphones, with a quarter checking their device over 100 times daily. Some 59% of them watch online video every day, and in the US, over a third of their viewing happens on connected TVs, PCs, smartphones and tablets, four times as much as the over 35s.

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Meet the screenagers, the disruptive generation whose media behavior will redefine the entertainment and media industry for decades to come.

Screenagers are disrupting your business model

TV and broadcast media brands are running fast to catch up with the shifting viewing habits of the screenagers. Advertising revenues are draining away from the traditional TV ad break and heading into social media sites, search budgets and mobile promotions. The established media players need to rethink their business models and use the latest technology to claw back the revenues that are fast flowing to new platforms.

Thankfully, new technology offers traditional players the tools to reinvent their business models. They have fantastic catalogues of content from TV drama series and films to sports rights and reality TV shows. They need a vehicle to promote that premium content. Which is why many are launching cross-platform media apps which can be downloaded onto connected TV services, mobiles and tablets.

Media apps allow entertainment brands to reconnect with audiences, build ladders up to the best content and find new and imaginative ways to monetize it. They can make money from their premium content through subscriptions, pay-per-view, sponsorship and advertising deals with brands. They can offer branded content and added services such as personalized interactions with dramatic characters, sports stars or celebrities.

To forge a premium content strategy, entertainment and media executives need to understand the often surprising behavior of their audiences and stay one step ahead. They must make sure they have an inspiring and relevant presence on all the emerging platforms. Build up a Twitter following by all means and encourage fans of a drama or sports competition to converse openly about it on their favored social platform. But always make sure that their digital journey includes time spent on your own media app, consuming premium content.;

Who are the screenagers?

To win back today’s generations with a media app strategy, executives need to understand the screenagers and how they consume media. At the older end of the screenage generation are the millennials — the 18-34 year olds, many of whom grew up with dial up connections and who came relatively late to the smartphone revolution. Meanwhile, the under-18s, known as generation Z, are true digital natives. Their media behavior learned from an early age involves swiping, tapping and shaking mobiles and tablets and hopping from one social platform, game or TV service to another. For them, traditional TV takes its place as just one more screen for watching video.

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Both millennials and Gen Z are looking for the good times. They steer past content which is mediocre or fails to stimulate them. Entertainment brands need to furnish them with the premium content that inspires them and have enough content firepower to keep them engaging with their media apps for hours every day.

Screenagers spend a fifth of their mobile app time on Facebook and pass increasing numbers of minutes on Snapchat. Media brands must have a presence on those platforms too. The aim is to forge close bonds with audiences and then to encourage them to download your media app and spend time on it.;

A new revenue model

Where screenagers go, advertising revenue follows soon after. Advertising is changing too, adapting to the new ways of consuming media. Broadcasters helped build some of the great brands of the 20th century through hard-to-avoid interruptive TV advertising. They must also make sure they become the advertising medium of the 21st century. In today’s environment, this requires a new advertising model based on permission, passion and involvement. The advertising has to be as good as the programming and offer real benefits of utility and entertainment as audiences can easily avoided in the digital age.

Entertainment and media brands need cross-platform media apps which become a destination for screenage viewers. To achieve this, they must develop a sophisticated premium content strategy which offers those viewers a strong reason to visit the app and stay there.;

Make change work for you

Viewing behavior is changing constantly with new ways to access content launching all the time. As new generations come up, they bring their new viewing habits with them. Media brands will need faith in the provider of their app as the technology behind it will be a key differentiator from rivals in the years to come. How easy is it to use? How responsive is it to changing circumstances? It is crucial to find a technology that is adaptable and versatile because whatever happens today is bound to be revolutionized by tomorrow.
Established players need to develop a media app strategy fast to win back customers who are defecting to rival platforms.

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