Month: October 2015

Mobile Apps Tap Top Spot While TV Naps


While some have predicted that this day would come, many never believed that it would.  According to Flurry Insights Blog, the prediction that mobile apps would overtake television in our daily viewing time in the United States now rings true.

“For the first time ever, time spent inside mobile applications by the average US consumer has exceeded that of TV” reports Flurry in a report published last month.

The report goes on to say that “the average US consumer is spending 198 minutes per day inside apps compared to 168 minutes on TV.”

Remember, that time spent inside of mobile applications has overtaken time spent watching television.  When you consider how much time Americans are spending on mobile devices in total; an earlier Flurry article disclosed that “in Q2 of 2015, American consumers spent, on average, 3 hours and 40 minutes per day on their mobile devices.  In just six short months since Q4 2014, the average time American consumers spend on their phones each day increased by 43 minutes.”

Americans now spend 220 minutes with their eyeballs fixed on their mobile devices compared to 168 minutes where their eyeballs are fixed on television.  When you consider that the average American is spending a total of nearly 6.5 hours per day on both mobile devices and watching television, you begin to understand that as marketers, our addressable audience is offering us an incredible window of opportunity in which to engage them.

This opportunity that is presented is also in fact, a double edged sword.

How many marketing messages is the average person exposed to in one day?  The answer to that question is also riddled with controversy as the debate regarding the answer is still taking place today.  A 2007 N.Y. Times article “Anywhere the Eye Can See, It’s Likely to See an Ad” cites a study by Yankelovich, a market research firm that “estimates that a person living in a city 30 years ago saw up to 2,000 ad messages a day, compared with up to 5,000 today. About half the 4,110 people surveyed last spring by Yankelovich said they thought marketing and advertising today was out of control.”

We also have to consider that this article was written before the advent and proliferation of programmatic media buying and retargeting, which may not increase the number of messages seen, but certainly increases the frequency of specific messages seen based on algorithmic strategies.

How then, can we as marketers craft messages that are compelling and relevant to our audience, that will somehow stand out and apart from the sea of messages that each of us are exposed to?   And, where and how within those 6.5 hours of mobile usage and television viewing are we likely to break through the clutter and win the attention, and consideration of our message deluged audience?

Perhaps it’s not Apps or TV, maybe it’s TV through Apps

Apple CEO Tim Cook said this during his Keynote: “We believe the future of television is apps.  When you experience TV in this way through an app, you realize how much better it can be. You can search for what you want, you can interact with it where and when you want.”

Netflix is an early adopter of the Television through Apps model, and with the new Apple TV which will have its own App Store, and the rest of the set top box competitors vying for market share, there is most likely a new “New Media” based on interactive engagement with both mobile and Smart TV apps on the not-to-distant horizon.

“By 2016 there will be 2 Billion Smart Phones worldwide” according to eMarketer.

How many Apps will there be?  One can only guess.  As modern marketers, we’ll be considering and contemplating how and when and where to reach those people with our messages that will be relevantly compelling and will break through the clutter to stand out from the crowd.

And, in case you hadn’t noticed, at the exact time of posting this there are 69 days, 7 hours, 48 minutes, 29 seconds until 2016 arrives.  Which isn’t a lot of time, so let’s start now!