Don’t laugh, but couch potatoes could soon be the most important customer segment for content marketers. The disparaging term has been around for a few decades, describing those whose leisure time is spent on the couch watching TV and video. Hey, we’ve all done a bit of lounging on the couch in our time, but what’s change is what ELSE the couch potatoes might be doing. Instead of just watching TV, those same people are likely to be using their smartphones and tablets to consume content – and that’s a real mobile content marketing opportunity.
If this sounds unbelievable, it isn’t, because a few recent studies support this idea. Earlier this year search giant and Android OS owner Google published The New Multiscreen World. The whole report is worth reading, but some of the highlights are presented in an infographic which highlights the following facts:
- Most media consumption is screen-based and 38% of that is on smartphones.
- While people are watching TV, 77% of them are also looking at another device. For 49% of them, that’s a smartphone.
- People are using multiple devices to meet their goals.
You’ve probably done it yourself, taking a look at how your team is doing on your tablet while waiting for your favorite TV program to come back on. Or using your smartphone to research where you’ve seen the lead actor in that movie before. This trend may not be good news for TV advertisers, but it’s potentially great news for content marketers.
The trend is also evident in the business to business sector, where a recent IDG report showed that 61% of B2B users watch work-related videos on mobile devices during the day, while 57% access similar content outside working hours.
And the Outbrain blog uses desktop browsing as a benchmark to show how mobile device users interact with content. The company found that smartphone users are more likely to click on articles, while tablet users have 250% more clicks than smartphones. Tablets have a 29% higher CTR than on desktops for video watching. The research also shows that people use their mobile devices consistently during the week and are most likely to be using them at 9pm – which is prime TV viewing time.
The obvious conclusion is that content marketers who create compelling content stand a good chance of having people read it while they’re watching TV. And if you’re really clued up about the TV schedule you could use a popular program as an angle. As the 2013 Mobile Experience Study (PDF) found, 43% of people discuss TV shows online while viewing, 35% chat about them during commercial breaks, and 39% comment after the program is done. And people continue to do product research, post social updates and watch mobile video while doing that.
As the study found, people love mobile devices because they make their lives easier.
That’s why usage is growing, and that’s why couch potatoes are a key audience for your content. Content marketers can schedule fresh content for that late evening slot and can create email newsletters, white papers and other content which people are likely to read at that time. And there’s one more thing to do to make sure the couch potatoes are reading your content and not your competitors’ – make sure it’s mobile optimized, which is one of the factors that’s most important in a mobile content marketing strategy and in building a relationship with mobile users.