By Lyndsey Schaefer
The key to mass market adoption of “second screen” apps, says BuddyTV’s Bill Baxter, is to aggregate large numbers of small audiences.
Baxter, who keynoted the 2nd Screen Summit in Santa Monica, Calif. on Wednesday, noted that 50 percent of television viewers are simultaneously emailing, using social networks, or browsing the Internet on another device.
BuddyTV has partnered with video programming distributors such as AT&T U-verse to create the level of interaction needed between mobile devices and primary screens for a convenient consumer experience. With more than 115,000 over-the-top titles available today, Baxter said, BuddyTV aims to help consumers find what they’re looking for.
Following Baxter’s keynote, a panel on “Creating an Engaging Experience for 2nd Screen Consumer Applications” explored the nature of consumer engagement. Baxter joined panelists Marc Beckwitt of M-GO, Kelly Egan of Fanhattan, Matt Kennedy of 1K Studios, and Ajay Shah of TVplus, to address ways to retain a consumer audience with second screen apps.
The panelists agreed that the goal of second screen apps is to pull consumers back into the TV—i.e., the primary screen—at the appropriate time. Engagement comes from two places: very rich metadata and hooks that allow consumer participation. Further development of search and discovery processes, the panelists said, is essential to making the second screen experience first-rate for all consumers.