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The weekend review: second screens and the future of ads

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What a week. Among Apple’s much-anticipated iPhone event, Twitter’s IPO buzz, and our last-minute preparation for Structure:Europe, there has been no shortage of news and exciting developments over the past few days. While we’re digesting some of the latest iPhone 5s and 5c features, our analysts are already looking ahead at the consumer gadgets and marketing space: The week’s most popular research content includes reports on the future of second-screen devices and how big-data-like techniques are transforming the online ad space.

First, in “How to take advantage of the second screen,” Jose Alvear analyzes the rise of multitasking, noting that nearly 40 percent of tablet and smartphone owners use another device while watching TV. Although “business models for second-screen programming still in its infancy,” Alvear notes that there is ample opportunity for advertisers, content owners, and TV operators to capitalize on the rise of the second screen, citing notable examples like the Twitter activity and other social networking traffic that resulted during the most recent Superbowl. While most second-screen activities are unrelated to the television programming being consumed, Alvear declares that there is a great untapped potential here and outlines the current second-screen landscape and existing business models to identify the greatest areas of opportunity for this emerging market.

Next, in “The revolution will be targeted: RTB and the future of programmatic advertising,” Aram Sinnreich looks at real-time bidding (RTB), one of the most transformative new paradigms in the online marketing sector. Sinnreich compares the influence of RTB to that of big data, as “RTB replaces the traditional relationship between online advertisers and publishers with an algorithmic system tailored to find the sweet spot between supply and demand, allowing both parties to optimize their assets and increase efficiency.” His report, based on interviews with senior digital marketing executives and industry analysis, provides a contextual overview of the online marketing landscape, the current RTB ecosystem, and potential market disruptors and technologies that could ultimately determine the future of the RTB landscape.

Last, in “10 strategies for improving content marketing with analytics,” Louis Columbus analyzes the best practices in the content marketing space and provides specific guidance around tying metrics to each of these items to improve results and create measurable outcomes. In addition to providing guidance around content-based analytics, Columbus also weighs in on effective dashboard creation, executive management, and social network strategy, and he sets standards for evaluation.

Also popular this week:

The cross-platform mobile app: advice for enterprise developers

The wearable-computing market: a global analysis

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