Media & Entertainment

We live in a digital world. The majority of Americans own a smartphone, and nearly half own a tablet. People spend more time interacting with digital platforms than watching television, listening to the radio or reading print publications. As media and entertainment companies look to drive business, it’s clear they should focus on digital, and mobile in particular. But how exactly can they embrace this philosophy moving forward?

Consumers in the driver’s seat

Mobile devices haven’t only encouraged consumers to interact with content away from television and radio—they’ve also encouraged the same users to take control of what they consume in a new, engaging way. Second-screen experiences bring TV shows to life on a viewer’s mobile device, even allowing them to participate in the action. Streaming music services mimic radio, but allow listeners to play DJ, determining what they hear and what they don’t. These developments can be lucrative for content creators. The Recording Industry Association of America reports that streaming music revenue grew by 39% in 2013, totaling $1.4B. Mobile devices also help fans enjoy entertainment experiences in person, with the added appeal of mobile applications, like tracking statistics in real time at a sporting event or seeing which of your friends plan to attend particular performances at a music festival. The devices can even store users’ event tickets or help them pay for food or merchandise. It’s no secret that mobile devices have become people’s go-to source for entertainment, particularly on the go. Now, the focus is on how to make these interactions more robust and increasingly seamless.

On demand is a lifestyle, not a feature

Media and entertainment companies already know what their audiences love. The key is to attract new fans and encourage as much interaction with their products as possible. The simplest way to do this? Make it more convenient than ever to enjoy content. Ipsos MediaCT reports 40% of Americans between the ages of 18 and 34 watch digital video or stream digital content every single day. By offering media on demand at any time, from any device—including mobile phones, tablets, gaming systems, laptop and desktop computers—entertainment companies make it easier for consumers to commit their time (and money) to their products. As an added benefit, these additional touchpoints have created new platforms where advertisers can reach a more captive audience.

Reaching an audience on its own terms

One way the entertainment industry is integrating itself into mobile lifestyles is by creating quality content for the devices people already own. Some mainstream television shows do this by creating dedicated native apps that share exclusive content. Some music apps address a pain point—like the excessive memory capacity needed to carry around lots of music—by offering subscription-based streaming. Another way to enable mobility is by enhancing live experiences. Major theme parks are helping guests by addressing the hassle simultaneously carrying admission tickets, ride passes, hotel keys and credit cards at the same time. How? By rolling all these items into a single, wearable device.

Leveraging mobility and user-generated content

Mobile devices aren’t just for consuming content. They’re also adept at creating content. Whether streaming video for a live broadcast, shooting photos to be used on social media or recording audio on the fly, mobile devices have an abundance of tools for media & entertainment companies to use at a moment’s notice. And when you consider how important user-generated content is to audience engagement effort these days, it’s best to remember that brand employees aren’t the only ones who will create the media those brands share.

Big data opens up new possibilities

There’s no sector of the media and entertainment industry big data analytics hasn’t affected, and its influence is only growing. Hollywood is tracking social media buzz to determine the best strategies for positioning movies, as well as to help predict box office success. In television, content companies are analyzing user behavior to help inform what types of shows they will produce. For example, House of Cards, the hit series from Netflix, was created based on insights gained from Netflix customer preference data. Recording artists like Lady Gaga and her team are using information on fans’ listening preferences to optimize playlists at live performances. In the world of sports, champions like Germany’s 2014 World Cup team are analyzing data related to players’ field positions, passing ability and ball retention to recruit the best soccer players and improve the team’s performance.

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