Studies show brands with cross-channel strategies continue conversations from one medium to the next to increase engagement.

Audiences worldwide are developing a taste for cross-channel web content, watching YouTube videos they discover through Facebook News Feeds and visiting websites they find on Pinterest. Brands must meet them on all these touch points and understand what’s driving them from one medium to the next if they want to hold buyers’ interests and keep them coming back.

A recent study from Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) exposed three motivations marketers need to anticipate and use as building blocks for their online content strategies. The desire for information, community and entertainment compel internet users to make the leap from traditional media to digital content. The report specifically addressed global consumers’ proclivity to participate on social channels after tuning into television programs.

The need to know

Viacom found people were most motivated to visit social media pages after watching television programs for functional endeavors. Forty-four percent went online to check times and dates for when programs air, while others look for news and exclusive updates.

It’s an inside joke

Being part of a community was the second greatest motivator for the cross-channel jump, with 34 percent stating they log into social accounts to share their taste with other like-minded individuals, and also to bolster their personal brands.

Free games and trivia

Users were also willing to engage on a second platform when entertainment was awaiting. One-quarter turn to social to play games related to TV shows while around 24 percent do the same to enter contests or answer related quizzes or polls. Even more striking was that 75 percent of participants stay engaged and play games after their favorite shows end for the season.

Consumers crave cross-channel marketing content, pushing brands to create new media.

Creating a cross-channel content marketing strategy enables brands to generate buzz across multiple networks and drive traffic back to their bread-and-butter offerings. In 2013, the overwhelming majority (97 percent) of marketers are creating social content, and they are looking to other media to flesh out their engagement practices, Brafton recently found. More than half of marketers surveyed (56 percent) in the Social Media Marketing Report 2013 said they are already on YouTube, but 69 percent said they plan to increase their efforts on the channel this year. Two-thirds are also taking a greater interest in blog content to complement their current activities on other social platforms.

There’s no doubt the stakes are high for today’s marketers, and brands that create winning cross-channel strategies can carry conversations seamlessly from social networks to their home pages.

Lauren Kaye is a Marketing Editor at Brafton Inc. She studied creative and technical writing at Virginia Tech before pursuing the digital frontier and finding content marketing was the best place to put her passions to work. Lauren also writes creative short fiction, hikes in New England and appreciates a good book recommendation.