A Colmar Brunton study recently found that smartphones now account for 27 percent of screen time for Kiwis, a similar amount to the contribution of laptops (29 percent) and television (28 percent).
Add to this the fact that 59 percent of Kiwi smartphone owners admitted to watching videos on their phones over the course of 2013 in a Google survey, and it comes as little surprise why media owners are consolidating their mobile video offerings.
Following on from the NZ Herald and Fairfax, MediaWorks has now improved its mobile video capabilities by launching MVOD, an offering billed as “a social, local, mobile-friendly video” service that is available across channels.
In February, MediaWorks extended its 3Now offering onto mobile with the introduction of the 3Now app, which gave viewers access to programming from TV3, Four and 3 News.
The launch of the MVOD offering extends this beyond the 3Now remit to include video footage produced on a daily basis for MediaWorks’ other media properties. This means that users can now log in instantly via their phones to watch clips that are produced by radio and news personalities.
“We've been developing this premium video format for some time,” said Siobhan McKenna, the chief executive of MediaWorks Interactive, in a statement on the MediaWorks webstie. “It's local video of the moment designed for mobile and for sharing. It's exclusive too - people you know doing funny/quirky/interesting/strange… stuff. It's a mood-lifter, a time waster, a giggle when you need it, a veritable pick-me-up in your pocket.”
And this move makes sense, given that Rachel Lorimer previously told StopPress that viewers are showing a growing appetite for watching shorter 3Now clips that have been produced by the pesonalities—particularly Jono and Ben—in addition to full shows.
Essentially, the launch of the MVOD service makes it easier for the mobile audience to discover content that would normally be restricted to YouTube or embedded on specific radio websites. Much like 3Now, it gives consumers a reliable resource of video content, which is regularly updated with local content.
And while the centralisation of all the content makes it easier for users to access the content, it also makes sense from an advertising perspective.
Until now, Kiwi media agencies have shown a reluctance to transfer a significant proportion of client ad spend to the mobile channel. In the latest digital IAB/PwC report found that of the $142.37 million spent on digital advertising in the second quarter, only 1.8 percent ($2.6 million) was spent on mobile advertising.
By introducing the MVOD offering, MediaWorks is giving its advertisers an opportunity to have their messages distributed across more platforms and more brands.
MediaWorks is currently introducing the product to agencies by pushing the fact that it offers “original content, created by [MediaWorks] brands for [MediaWorks] audiences, featuring [MediaWorks] unique talent/personalities and only viewable on [MediaWorks] platforms.”
And in an effort to further drive digital revenue growth, MediaWorks also plans to create native advertising opportunities in the future, which will enable advertisers to collaborate with personalities to produce branded content that can be distributed through the network.
For now, mobile ad spend might not be representative of the size of the audiences, but media players across the industry are starting to effect changes that illustrate that digital advertising doesn't necessarily involve a repurposed TVC. And this is encouraging those that control the purse strings to diversify their ad spend, leading to rapid growth in both the mobile and digital channels.