On Twitter's Streaming Focus, and How to Tap Into Rising TV Consumption Trends
Wanna' know why Twitter's going all-in on live-streaming and video content?
Take a look at this chart:
As explained by Twitter:
"Our unlimited access to information is changing the way we consume and engage with content. Activities that were once thought of as leisure and entertainment are now being multi-tasked while we browse our phones. In fact, nearly 85% of internet users surf the web while watching TV. The phenomenon of using your mobile device while watching television has been coined as "second screen" and will continue to grow in popularity over the next few years."
As you can see, according to eMarketer's forecasts, more than 91% of internet users will be simultaneously be using the internet, in some form, as they watch TV by next year.
This is where Twitter sees opportunity - rather than approaching this as 'second-screening', Twitter's working to better align their platform with rising user behaviors (particularly among younger users) and deliver an all-in-one experience. In Twitter's view, TV and web browsing shouldn't compete for your attention, they should support it - and who better to facilitate this than the platform more users turn to to discuss live events - especially TV programs?
NFL on Twitter via Apple TV
In theory this makes sense - Twitter's well-placed to capitalize on this new paradigm, where the consumer is in control of everything - what you want to watch, how you want to watch it, who you want to watch it with. Live-streaming also adds an interactive element, giving you a whole new way to consume and engage in one place.
The data points to the right conclusion, Twitter's working on ways to integrate this change. The only problem with this is that it takes time.
User behaviors are clearly evolving, more people are conducting more activities online while watching TV. But at the moment, the TV set still reigns supreme.
Online consumption is rising, but right now, TV is still where people are watching more often, and as such, if you want to reach the biggest audience, you can either wait it out and let consumers slowly shift to you, or you can investigate ways to integrate your offerings onto home TV sets.
Given the market pressure, Twitter can't afford to wait, which is why they're looking to add more ways to enable people to watch Twitter live content on their TV sets - but it's always with a view to this wider trend. Twitter's streaming bet is about aligning with that shift and evolving their platform to serve a larger purpose. And it might just work, but they need time, and tools that simplify and improve the TV viewing process.
For the immediate present, however, Twitter also needs to maximize their opportunities based on this trend by prompting advertisers to consider these consumption habits in their messaging.
On this, Twitter advises that brands should:
- Align your campaigns with TV references which resonate with your target audience
- Tap into live events, where people are already engaged in conversation
- Create video content for a mobile audience
This is where the conversation on Twitter is happening, and where it's headed. If you're considering how Twitter will look long-term, this is your best indicator of what to expect.
Opportunity exists right now to tap into this conversation, and it could also serve as a great primer for where Twitter will be in future. If you can maximize your use of the platform based on these trends, you could be well-placed if they can evolve live-streaming into an all-inclusive consumption/interaction experience.
It'll take time, but this is the direction Twitter is moving. Worth considering in your strategic planning.
Follow Andrew Hutchinson on Twitter