Mitch Joel is a founding partner and president of Twist Image, a Canadian digital marketing agency. Joel is a noted blogger, podcaster and thought leader on the topic of new media marketing. Joe Pulizzi, from Content Marketing Institute, recently interviewed Joel and asked him what he thought “the next big thing” was going to be for marketers.
One thing marketers don’t understand well yet is the idea of “screens.” Yesterday I spoke at a conference and the speaker before me was talking about “four screens.” (I thought there were three. Turns out tablets are the fourth screen.) I talk about one screen. In a cloud-based, hyper-connected, super-untethered world, the only screen that’s going to matter to the consumer is the screen that’s in front of them.
Think of it this way: Say you read a page in your Kindle. You put it down then pick it up again on the subway on your iPhone app. You come to the office and maybe you read another page or two on your screen. It’s asynchronous. As you move to a world where anything in front of us can become a screen — which is something else we are going to see — that changes the game! In the world today, I can see how you would say “four screen” or “three screen.” Mobile is not the same as an iPod Touch, which is not the same as a computer. That’s fine. But don’t you see that the smartphone looks a lot like the iPad? The interaction is very similar, and becoming closer and closer. And as TVs are becoming more and more web enabled, they will be operated by voice or touch. It’s all very obvious. So what are you going to do today as a content professional as we rapidly ascend to this one-screen world?