A few weeks ago, we issued a press release announcing the launch of our AdVantage CDP, audience data management and analytics platform (customer data platform), built exclusively for marketers and ad sales at digital media companies. Following closely on the heels of that announcement, we had our coming out party at The Haven, the rooftop restaurant in New York City, a stone’s throw from Times Square and a short walk from Rockefeller Center. About 60 invited guests from a variety of media companies as well as some of our clients from other industries showed up to listen to a very interesting panel discussion featuring Richard Wolffe, VP and Executive Editor at MSNBC; Scott Keating, Senior Director, Fan Relationship Management; Ellen Stone, EVP Marketing at Bravo and Oxygen Media; and Cameron Davies, SVP Analytics at NBC News.

Screen Wars – room for friendly debate?It was a picture perfect evening; the weather was just right for a rooftop event. The venue was packed, as most guests arrived early and got into the mood, some with the help of our special cocktail for the evening, “The Last Word”. Once the panelists were miked and seated, Julie Baker, who runs our media solutions group and was moderating the panel, got things going.

The topic of the evening was “How to Win the Screen Wars”. Given the makeup of the panel, most of the questions revolved around the topics of identifying and engaging audiences across multiple screens, mobile and otherwise. What were companies doing to keep up with the movement of their audiences to mobile and their penchant for using multiple devices, often to interact in different ways at different times? It was interesting to see how each of these individuals, from different companies with varying content, deals with these challenges. Some of them are already moving to a mobile-first approach while others are using mobile channels primarily to interact with their large screen audiences to get them more engaged. Each is using a different approach to link their online and on-air audiences and it was generally agreed that even connecting individuals across digital, mobile devices is still an evolving science.

It was fascinating to hear the varying perspectives on the speed at which advertising is moving to mobile, the disagreements being more on rapidity of the shift rather than whether there will be one. Despite the hype, television remains the major source of advertising support for all of the major media companies. This is a point that was highlighted by the panelists even while the discussion focused on the shift to mobile. In response to a question on whether the world was becoming digital first, there was general agreement that strategies that put the audience first – rather than the device or medium – were the ones that were bound to succeed. With that point being made, the panelists, moderator, and audience went on to mingle and continue the discussions over food and drink for the rest of a very magical evening.

We were very fortunate to have Richard Wolffe of MSNBC re-cap his thoughts on capturing audiences across devices and the implications of 2nd screening. Watch this video, to hear his thoughts on this ever changing industry.

SlideShare: Closing the Gap

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