ITV Formalising Twin-Screen Strategy; First Stop: World Cup

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We’ve written a couple of times on how ITV (LSE: ITV) is getting increasingly turned on by the phenomenon of social updates and online engagement during live TV shows.

Now it’s getting serious about the prospects, formalising the efforts under an online initiative it’s calling “ITV Live”. The first project is an online companion to ITV’s televised World Cup broadcasts this summer.

A web dashboard will include real-time match stats, polling, quizzes, live and on-demand video and highlights, plus chat. The theory goes, football fans will probably watch the match on one screen and interact with another.

We think many of them may actually have a can of beer in hand, rather than a laptop, but it’s clear why twin-screen is attractive to ITV – doubling the number of screens consumers are using can also double the amount of advertising to which they are exposed. ITV.com is hotly pursuing the growing web video ads market currently.

ITV’s online director Ben McOwen Wilson is bullish in the announcement, saying: “We think the ITV Live experience will not only be the definitive real-time experience of World Cup 2010 but also a platform that we plan to build on for all the live ITV television events for the future.

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