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Media Leaders Discuss the Consumer Shift to Cross-Platform

2 minute read | June 2012

At Nielsen’s Consumer 360 event, Nielsen’s president of global media products and advertiser solutions, Steve Hasker, kicked off a panel by sharing Nielsen’s latest insights on how audiences are using multiple screens and devices. Rapid consumer adoption is driving a shift to digital, mobile, and on-demand options. In just the last 12 months, smartphone penetration has gone up 34 percent, tablet adoption is up 400 percent, and Internet connected TV is up 25 percent.


These increases create both challenges and opportunities for the marketing and media community. Hasker talked about Nielsen’s Cross-Platform Ratings, which looks at audience across TV and online, with plans to extend deeper into tablet and mobile. “We are incorporating cross-platform viewing into tablets and mobile devices. Our next step is to double our panel size to 20,000,” he said.

During the panel discussion, the group expanded on major trends in cross-platform strategies. John Spadaro, SVP, Managing Director Research, Zenith, a strategic media planning and buying agency, said his clients are focused on finding the right place to find the right consumer. “It’s really not a question on how to use a specific channel. You simply cannot succeed in a single-channel environment.”

Peter Seymour, EVP Strategy and Research, Disney Media Networks echoed that sentiment. Noting that Disney looks at what the consumer wants, how they act, and the differences in behavior patterns across platforms. All of these things determine where and how they deliver the Disney experience to the consumer. When it comes to delivering content across platforms, Seymour says there’s no one size fits all. “There are situational and age differences. If kids are watching video in the back of the car, we empower them with mobile video.”

Brad Smallwood, Head of Measurement and Insights for Facebook, said that they think of themselves as a cross-platform company and look to collaboration as a source of growth. “We recognize that the future for us is very much about people developing off of our platform. Collaborations with Zynga, social TV… that’s where we see a lot of our growth happening.” Clint McClain, Sr. Director of Marketing, Walmart, sees collaboration as important for consumer engagement. “I’m looking for an innovation that we can build together for the consumer. I’m willing to roll the dice — just tell me that the customers going to be more engaged.”

Anthony Risicato, General Manager, VideoHub, talked about how he’s interested in consumer behavior across all platforms, specifically, the influence that platforms have on each other. “We want to be able to see where there are correlations between the viewing patterns and be able to make decisions off of that.”

For more information, download Nielsen’s Cross-Platform Report.

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