Advertising Focus: Where People Are Getting Their Information as Web Time Equals TV Time

Before the invention of television, families sat together and listened to shows on the radio.  Times have certainly changed.  In the late 1920’s, a man named Philo Farnsworth is credited for inventing the early television transmission. By the 1940’s, television began replacing the radio as families’ preferred method of entertainment.  Today, people are still watching about the same amount of television as in recent years, but the Internet is changing the way consumers spend the rest of their time. This is changing the way companies must focus their advertising.

Forrester’s 2010 survey reveals that people are spending as much time on the Internet as they are watching television.  The U.S. consumer is spending 13 hours a week doing these combined activities.   Internet usage is increasing dramatically – 121% over the past five years.  Consumers are finding that they are doing more things online such as shopping and visiting social-networking sites. 

Due to technology and consumer’s new focus, advertising has had to change as well.  Cost-per-click advertising has gained in popularity.  However, as technology increases, so does the options for advertisers.  Companies can now use retargeting technology offered by companies like Fetchback.   According to their site, Fetchback defines retargeting as “putting messages in front of lost prospects who have left your Web site in order to attract them back and convert – finish the purchase, sign up for the newsletter, or whatever action you’re looking for.” To see a live demo of how their system works, click here.

Advertisers must also become creative with people on the go.  Mobile devices allow easy access to the Internet.  More than one third of American cellphone owners use a mobile browser. Using browsers to connect to the Internet and texting are the top two uses for these devices.  Consumers are able to be mobile and still connect to their social media sites. 

How can today’s advertisers target consumers?  The Internet Advertising Bureau’s mobile best practice guide may be useful. iAd platform and Google Mobile may be helpful to reach smartphone users.