As you know, during the last few weeks we released TOK for Oscars but we also met some interesting people.
Justin Beere is one of them.

He is responsible for Communications and Special Projects at Kwarter, one of the most relevant company focused on second screen apps and sport.

1. FanCake, Social Dugout and BudLight are all apps with a strong gamification component: do you think that it is the key to success for engaging people or is just a way to monetize second screen experience?

We certainly think game mechanics are one way to engage people. TV has always been social, so the next innovation is going to be focused on interactivity.

Playing games based on live TV isn’t a behavior we’re trying to invent, but rather to simply enable. Think about online fantasy sports, or watching Jeopardy with friends, or all of the Oscar pools that viewers will participate in at parties this weekend. People have been playing games based on TV for awhile; and so part of what we do at Kwarter is bring that to the mobile space.
As an engagement model, gamification adds a truly interactive dimension to the second screen experience, and creates long-term relationships between viewers and their favorite programs.

2. Kwarter’s products are all focused on sport: are you planning to expand?

Sports programming is easily the most popular form of live TV there is, so that made it a pretty obvious place for Kwarter to begin developing a second screen platform. But that was just the start.

Last year we learned a lot about what brands and broadcasters hope to achieve for their users and their businesses through the second screen, and so we’ve spent a lot of time making sure our technology is scalable, flexible, and accessible enough to meet those goals. This year we plan to expand our project portfolio beyond sports, so that any broadcaster, brand, agency, or content producer can use the Kwarter platform to build unique second screen apps. Just think about reality TV alone!

There’s so much great content there that’s perfectly suited for casual gamers. By working with partners across all TV genres, we’ll demonstrate the Kwarter platform’s broad utility as a second screen solution.


3. The future of second screen: how do you imagine it in three years?

The next few years are going to be cool from a technology perspective. Broadcasters will enable smartphones to automatically sync with programming, and stay in sync throughout a broadcast. This will open up a lot of doors for truly interactive TV and creative second screen content.

Our CEO, Carlos, talks a lot about how, in the future, TV shows will have writers for both the first and second screen. I can definitely see that happening, especially as part of a strategy for broadcasters to reinforce “appointment viewing” behaviors.

4. Second screen and Social TV startups: which is, in your opinion, the best business model that is going to keep them alive?

That’s the $64,000 dollar question isn’t it!

I’d be surprised if there turned out to be just one recipe for success in Social TV, but I can tell you Kwarter’s point of view. Broadcasters are meant to own the viewers of their content, no matter which screen they’re looking at.

Our mission, then, is to be the best tool for them to not only engage their viewers on second screens, but to own the communities that are created around these new second screen applications.

Thank you so much Justin!

Gamification can really be a game changer and we surely hope that second screen sport apps will continue be successful…

Do you have any further question? Just leave a comment, send a tweet @toktvus or use the hashtag #TOKinterviews .