Extending reach and engagement requires the right digital balance in 2012

As consumers increasingly incorporate digital devices into their daily life, the methods of extending a brand’s reach have changed dramatically. And as budget shifts from television, radio and print into deeper digital investments, many marketers find it difficult to keep up.

The need for a digital presence is underlined by a recent eMarketer report that found that in the US, the average time spent with major media is up by nearly an hour per day among adults since 2008. The major media categories that actually dropped in this study were radio, newspapers and magazines, while, not surprisingly, time spent consuming internet, mobile and video media spiked significantly.

Simply realizing the need for a digital presence is the easy part. The challenge lies in truly leveraging digital to engage and drive action among consumers.

The reality is that brands are increasingly moving toward digital at the same time that consumers are multitasking across 2 to 3 screens. A 2011 study from Yahoo! found that while watching TV daily, 66% of mobile device owners multitask with a laptop or desktop PC, 49% use a web-enabled mobile phone, and 46% use a tablet. As we mentioned previously, 2012 will likely see these numbers increase dramatically as brands continue to drive sales with mobile marketing.

The key for marketers now is to find ways to communicate effectively with these consumers—without getting lost in the digital noise. As Cass Baker, EVP of Industry Practices and Product Development at Leapfrog Online, shared in this eMarketer report, “Listening to consumers and seeing where they show up and how they want to communicate with brands is critical.”

In 2012, using available data to find the correct balance in digital and viewing all media as one multi-faceted push for your brand will be the key to not only brand reach, but consumer engagement as well.

Read more from eMarketer.