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Top 10 second-screen mobile campaigns of 2013

Big brands such as Visa, Coca-Cola and Dunkin? Donuts significantly stepped up their mobile and television efforts in 2013 to bolster engagement with viewers plugged into mobile devices while simultaneously watching TV, making second-screen strategies one of the year's important mobile tactics. 

The trend picked up speed as the year went on once Twitter introduced targeting and advertising capabilities specifically created to meet the needs of TV advertisers. In 2014, second-screen experiences are likely to play a big role in brands' marketing strategies for the Winter Olympics, Super Bowl and Academy Awards.

Here are the top 10 second-screen campaigns of this year, in alphabetical order.

ABC makes show shoppable via mobile
ABC used a second-screen app in April of this year to promote the show ?Scandal.?

Via the app, consumers can discover and shop some of the fashion and home furnishing products featured in the show. ABC worked with the Get This iPad app, which leveraged audio recognition technology to detect when a consumer was watching the TV show.

Even though marketers are actively exploring ways to tie mobile and TV together through marketing, the opportunity to drive commerce is still relatively untapped.

Therefore, ABC proved that it is bullish this year with an initiative that lets consumers shop straight from their mobile devices.

CBS connects users to programming with second-screen app
CBS rolled out an app at the beginning of this year that aggregates content into a hub and was tailored towards fans of specific shows.

The shows included ?CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,? ?Hawaii Five-O? and ?NCIS: Los Angeles.?

The app includes episode-specific insight from the creative teams behind the show as well as photos, videos and maps.

For many broadcasters, mobile is not only making more content available to viewers but also creating more tailored, niche content.

Coca-Cola enlists mobile Web, SMS for American Music Awards promotion
Coca-Cola is one of the marketers that has been active in leveraging mobile with on-air events.

To connect with teenagers at the recent American Music Awards, Coca-Cola used a combination of SMS and mobile Web to keep fans in the loop during the show.

The campaign included the microsite where teens could listen to several instrumental segments. They could then vote on their favorite segment, and the votes were used to create a song that was performed by YouTube artist Hugo Schneider.

For brands such as Coca-Cola that already have a massive footprint with television sponsorships, mobile is increasingly playing a bigger role in how marketers connect with at-home viewers.

Given the fact that teenagers are some of the most tech-savvy consumers, Coca-Cola?s campaign points to the need for marketers to build several different mobile tactics into campaigns.

Expedia drives mobile bookings via TV campaign, trip-a-day giveaway
Expedia recently leveraged a TV spot to show consumers how easy it is to make a mobile booking through its app.

Expedia placed a Shazam mobile-call-to-action in the TV ad that led consumers to download the online travel agency?s app.

From there, consumers could enter a sweepstakes through the Expedia app for a chance at winning free trips. In exchange for downloading the app and signing up with an account, consumers could be entered to win the prizes.

With more consumers watching TV ads with their mobile devices in hand, tying together a TV ad with a time-sensitive mobile promotion not only helps Expedia get the word out about the sweepstakes, but also bolster app downloads to build a stronger relationship with consumers.

National Geographic Channel targets tablet users to drive co-viewing
The National Geographic Channel worked with mediahub/Mullen in February to develop a unique mobile advertising campaign to trigger tune-ins for a documentary about President Lincoln.

On the day of the program?s launch ? Feb. 17 ? National Geographic began running tablet-specific creative that changed in real-time once the documentary began.

The ads specifically targeted tablet users at home connected to Wi-Fi networks and is an example of how marketers can hone in on a specific demographics through targeted mobile campaigns.

The National Geographic campaign is also an example of how marketers are leveraging the tablet specifically with lean-back and immersive experiences.

NBCUniversal drives TV tune-ins with innovative Twitter partnership
NBCUniversal gained a first-mover approach in October with a deal between Twitter and Comcast that drives tune-ins by turning a mobile device into a virtual remote.

NBCUniversal rolled out a ?See it? button within tweets about the network?s TV programs. 

Comcast Xfinity subscribers could sync their account with Twitter so that clicking on the button automatically turned on a TV set. Additionally, subscribers could set DVRs or reminders to watch a TV show from Twitter.

Broadcasters have relied on the increase in social activity taking place via mobile to drive tune-ins in the past few years, but the NBCUniversal partnership is unique in that it physically links consumers to a TV set to watch a program.

Even though the NBCUniversal program is limited to Comcast subscribers currently, there is significant potential for these programs to expand to other cable networks as more marketers look to link mobile and TV viewers together.

Social, TV cross-pollination continues with new Trident, Dunkin? Donuts spots
The launch of Twitter?s social video app Vine made a big splash for marketers this year in rethinking video creative.

Mondel?z International?s Trident leveraged Vine to create a six-second commercial that aired on music TV network Fuse in September. 

Additionally, Dunkin? Donuts created four TV spots that will run during the football season that recreate a memorable play from games. The coffee chain?s campaign was supported by promoted tweets.

Sprint leverages Twitter for second-screen effort targeting NBA championship viewers
Sprint was one of the first marketers this year to leverage Twitter?s new ad targeting tool during NBA games.

As sports fans watched the game, they could tweet at Sprint?s Twitter handle or tweet the hashtag #KLoveTakeover to ask questions and interact with NBA player Kevin Love.

These users indicated that they were watching an NBA game and were therefore served a Sprint promoted tweet that included deals and offers.

During live sporting events, mobile is the primary way that consumers are sharing tweets and following the game, and Sprint?s initiative points to more sports marketers leveraging Twitter for similar campaigns in 2014.

Starz drives new series viewership via companion app
In April, Starz created a second-screen application to promote a new, original series called ?Da Vinci?s Demons.?

Consumers who downloaded the app could either play along with the show in real-time or unlock content after the show aired.

The app also pulled in video content and exclusive interviews from the show.

Second-screen apps have been around for quite some time, but what is interesting about Starz?s app is that the broadcaster used the app as a way to introduce a new show to audiences. 

Visa brings football fantasies to life via social media second-screen campaign
In September, Visa activated its sponsorship of the National Football League with a social and mobile campaign that asked consumers to post a picture of their football fantasies on either Twitter or Instagram.

Visa set up a mobile-optimized microsite, where they could upload a picture with a 50-word blurb that explains their fantasy. Visa tracked the discussions throughout football season and awarded eight consumers their fantasy, as long as it cost less than $100,000.

To be eligible to win, consumers had to link their entry form to a Visa card and use it once during the entry dates.

Mobile took on a central role during the campaign since the bulk of social media activity takes place from smartphones and tablets during games.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Marketer, New York