Dec 11, 2014

Second Screen: It's All About The Data

We’ve seen the future of the second screen and it’s all about the data. Data is going to be the currency that fuels the entertainment industry in the years ahead and second screen will be the way that data is collected.

Think of how readily we give up personal information to search engines or to join social media sites. So why wouldn’t we give it up for something we really value: great entertainment? 

The industry has always held the ultimate consumer attraction — great stories, great stars, great sound — all of which have the power to draw unlimited audiences on a global scale for hours on end. What information would you give up about yourself if it was the only way to watch the Super Bowl? What would you give to get the final episode of your favorite series first? When you think of the data you give up to maintain virtual friendships with people you haven’t seen since fourth grade, you’ll understand the potential value of giving up that same data to have access to entertainment.

That’s why we’re convinced that the media and entertainment industry is in an amazing position to prosper in a future world where the real currency will be the data we are able to collect about our customers. The second screen is not about the screen. It’s about connecting the content company to their customer so they can learn more about them. 

Enabled by their fundamental interactivity, these second screen mobile devices will be the single, most popular way viewers will (literally) touch their programming, while paying for the experience with marketable information about their viewing, social and shopping habits and preferences. 

Without a second screen component, broadcast, cable and even streaming are going to be (virtually) unplugged; they will continue struggling to sell advertisers who are challenging their numbers based on outdated measurement tools. 

Once granted access to their customers data via second screen devices, however, those content delivery networks will hold the key to the largest untapped, demographic treasure trove in history; the data about who watches what, when and where will provide them and their business partners with accurate and irrefutable data, and measurable ROI. 

The second screen will be the ultimate destination in today’s smart entertainment supply chain. By completing this connection, content creators and owners will have a real-time feedback loop that will enhance both business and creative decisions. It will put the content owner and their advertisers in direct contact with their consumers for the very first time. It will enable content marketing to come from the most authentic of sources — the fans themselves. 

Audience measurement and analysis will become even more accurate and fast. And a new media and entertainment monetization engine will emerge, generating more profits, more productions, and more creative experimentation than ever before.

This post originally ran on the 2nd Screen Society web site and reflects our new thinking around the meaning and value of 2nd Screen. You can see it in action at the 2nd Screen Summit at CES, Monday, January 5th at the Encore. Tickets available now.

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