Every time I plop down on my living room couch, I am bombarded with requests from my three screens. “Come play with me!” barks the big one. “Take me outside!” quips the scrappy, yet sharp one. “Hold me in your lap!” yelps the middle screen. With all of these screens vying for my attention at once, what’s a guy to do?

Although they don’t jump on me when I get back from work and seldom piddle on the floor, my three screens do demand my attentiveness when I am at home. When one starts to bore me, I move on to the next. One starts yipping to me about things I don’t care about, I pick up and play with the others. Although they don’t chew up my sneakers, my three screens occupy the majority of my time while I am in my living room.

My three screens are every marketer’s challenge. Gone are the days when everybody gets their messaging from a singular source, or ten sources for that matter. My screens are constantly providing all of the information I need, and when one stops paying attention to me, I stop paying attention to it! How can a marketer play well with all three screens?

Target your messaging

My three screens are already in my living room, begging to be pet and just aching to share how their day was. For every message your company sends out, you should start by identifying who your target audience is, what channels they use and when you should reach them. Cultivate the data gathered and make the message stronger. With the right marketing partner, you can find out every little detail of your audience with profiling, predictive modeling, indexing, segmentation, mapping and the list goes on. Put a little time into the “who” your audience really is, then figure out the “where” to reach them.

Work between devices

As I play with one screen, I might text my friend about the other screen, and send a link to a product I like from the other screen, where it is shared by my friends on their screens. Coordinating these communication channels and understanding how social data is used is the key to effective marketing. Further harnessing the Big Data gathered from these touchpoints will kick your marking into overdrive. Whereas, “my three screens” might seem like a problem to most people, “disruptive technologies” allow me to be reached at any given time. A true tactical engagement is when the screens play together into a singular message. 

Embrace emerging technology

Even though one of my screens might get jealous when a new screen enters the house, and might assert its dominance in a less than savory manner, teaching my screens to play together is key. Emerging technologies are making television more social. Augmented reality devices like “Google glasses” (video below) can use a screen to transform the world around you. Sound-recognition technology can identify what channels you are engaging with and (theoretically) target relevant messaging to you while you engage on another screen. Every day, the ability to make smarter and more relevant marketing messaging is advancing. Embracing and understanding these options while this technology is still young will separate the progressive marketers from the rest of the pack.

So my three screens are special to me for different reasons, eat a different diet, and love me back in different ways. How I keep them engaged with each other and myself can be directly impacted by the right marketing plan, the understanding of the data they gather and whether or not the new screen entering my house is paid any attention.