We’re So Addicted To Our Phones That We Can’t Even Watch TV Without Staring At Them Anymore

YuMe presentation distractions

[credit provider=”YuMe and IPG Media Lab”]

It’s no surprise that people distract themselves while watching TV, using smartphones, laptops, iPads, etc.But here’s an interesting study about how these distractions — and tools like the DVR’s fast-forward function — affect TV and online video viewing, especially advertising. (The study was conducted by YuMe, a video ad tech company, and IPG Media Lab, part of Interpublic Group.)

Notable: The mobile phone is the most common distraction while watching anything. Some 60% of the study sample distracted themselves with mobile phones while watching TV, and 46% did while watching online video.

While watching TV, that didn’t actually have a big effect on people’s attention to advertising — most people seem to be ignoring the ads anyway — but it has a stronger effect online, where distractions seem to actually distract people from what they’re watching.

This makes a strong case for mobile marketing, or for media companies and brands to do more to reach people on their phones while they’re watching TV — whether apps, complementary experiences, buying mobile ads, or things like encouraging a show’s stars to tweet during their live broadcasts.

If you’re a media company or ad-buying brand, and you’re not thinking about mobile elements for everything you do, you’re probably making a mistake.

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