Lately, there has been an uptick in the use of the word cross-platform in the context of advertising. Everyone, and quite possibly their extended families are using the term… 

What does this really mean? 

For example, if you’re selling digital ad-tech, then it generally refers the platforms your software supports for advertising. A buyer of digital impressions would likely agree, because that’s the portion of the overall campaign for which they’re responsible.  

However, a planner in a brand agency may consider things a little differently. Their client, the brand advertiser, wants their advertising message to be delivered across all mediums, both linear and non-linear, with a diversity of audience measures. And they’ll want to do it in a way that ensures brand safety, otherwise payments for the campaign may come up short. 

Being constantly bombarded with messages, we naturally filter information through our own experiences, perspectives and intent. We acquire definitions along our career journey, and we adapt those definitions to our current environment. Inevitably, this creates misunderstandings. It takes time for a definition to become widely accepted. Until that happens, many definitions live as marketing jargon starting life in public presentations until they find a resting place in the graveyards of technology trends. 

Let’s be honest. Advertisers power the advertising industry with their marketing investments. They are very clear in their marketing objectives. Simply stated, wherever a potential audience for their product or service is to be found, advertisers want to reach them. They want the right audiences, at the right time, for the right price. And, they want them across all the right or relevant mediums.   So, let’s at least agree that cross-platform is not cross-media. Because, while everyone these days claim cross-platform capability, no one except Decentrix actually delivers cross-media.