Fighting for Mobile Attention against Games and Social

The mobile battlefield is so barren and cruel that traditional media producers rarely venture there.

Mobile Social and Games

They still fire in video (from a distance) – and win some minor skirmishes, especially with short-form content. But they don’t understand the environment and would never dare to go hand to hand with the audience.

Next year, there will be over 1.91 billion smartphone users across the globe, a figure that will increase another 12.6% to near 2.16 billion in 2016. eMarketer, 2015

Mobile is where the next story war will take place. And I always go where the story takes me.

I Go Where I Have To Go…

On that mobile device, right now, your audience is thumb twitching, sliding, tapping and swiping their way towards new forms of entertainment that will put traditional media producers out of a job.

They’re telling their own stories on social and making their own fun on mobile games.

They don’t need us, yet. They’re in the digital backyard, hanging over the fence, chatting and interacting. Social media is the biggest gun since nuclear  – FACT!

57% of US Millennials check Facebook at least once a day to get news and information, with 30% logging on several times a day and 14% doing so nearly constantly. The Media Insight Project, 2015

The audience are illustrating their own life story with timelines full of aspirational media – fiction and fact in over generous helpings that tell the story of their lives the way they want them to be.

What If There’s No Room?

You thought that social media was distracting – you’ve seen nothing yet.

Also marching on mobile is the Third Reich of attention deficit – GAMES!

Games send you down long dark tunnels full of beasts, jewels and intrigue – towards new conflicts and challenges. These games have stories too. From the simplest promise of a journey to somewhere else, to the complex systems you own and become the god of in your own narrative.

In 2015, US mobile game revenues will grow 16.5% to reach $3.04 billion. eMarketer, 2015

In terms of time and attention logistics – you can’t slide a paper treaty between social and games.

Maybe There’s A Way..?

Getting attention and captivating your audience on mobile will require strategy, grit, tenacity and a little bit of story magic.

Plus the ability to twist and turn as the audience respond. Agile stories that respond to the interactive audience.

A good story always glimmers with hope. You only need one person to listen and play to gain ground. Build on it and move forwards. Battles can be won one person at a time.

That’s my game – on the battlefield of mobile devices!

I’d be fascinated to hear your thoughts – or if you have social and game experiences you want to share it would be great if you left a comment. This is the most interesting area of modern media for me – I hope you like it too!


About the author

I run Bellyfeel which gives me the opportunity to develop innovations in media, education and entertainment, plus exploring the future of storytelling. More here...
4 Responses
  1. Daniel Waldon

    Agree totally with this, The mobile market is the future of storytelling for me. You only need to look at the phenomenally cheesy yet incredible Swedish produced film Kung Fury. A 30 minute short film with a cameo from David Hasslehoff in the style of an 80’s cop drama and a side scrolling action fighting game. They have released a game to go alongside the short film that is accessible via android, IOS and also Playstation and Sony markets.

Leave a Reply