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New Arbitron/comScore system's first task: Measuring ESPN's cross-platform audience

Thursday, September 13, 2012 - 12:20pm

While we were waiting for Arbitron to finally unveil their long-awaited unified on-air/online radio measurement (see RAIN here), they've announced a deal with comScore and ESPN to measure audio, video, and display across radio, tv, the web, and mobile.

The goal here is to create audience measurement using common metrics on a national and continuous basis, so content providers and marketers can gauge the reach, engagement, and cross-platform duplication of audience.

"The unprecedented size and scope of the project is being driven by the multiplatform measurement requirements of ESPN, which delivers video, audio and display content via television (both in-home and out-of-home), online and mobile video, PC web, mobile web, apps, tablets, digital audio and terrestrial radio" (see yesterday's top story in RAIN here), the companies' announcement read.

The initiative (characterized as "five-platform" as it separates "smartphones" adn "tablets") will integrate "the census and panel-based PC, mobile and TV set-top box measurement capabilities of comScore along with enhanced, single-source, multiplatform measurement capabilities of the Arbitron Portable People Meter (PPM) technology," according to the statement.

Though no roll-out date has been announced, ESPN, comScore and Arbitron will unveil more details October 1-3 at the upcoming Advertising Week convention in New York.

Read the press release here.

DMR shares insights culled from 5 years of digital marketing for major market radio at RAIN Summit

Friday, July 20, 2012 - 12:15pm

Today at our RAIN Summit Midwest event at The Conclave, strategic marketing firm DMR Interactive shares the results of its comprehensive analysis of radio clients' digital campaigns over the past 5 years. DMR synthesized results from digital marketing in markets like New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Dallas, and Miami -- totalling over $2.3 million worth of advertising and 1.2 billion impressions and half a million clicks.

First, DMR found that 80% of those that respond to digital ads are heavy radio users (listening at least one hour a day).

Another important finding -- and something that radio may find counter-intuitive -- concerns the use of station logos and slogans. One "well branded, major market CHR station" was using its station logo in display ads, as was getting poor results. After the station removed its logo for "images of listeners and core artists" in the ad, response more than doubled. Similarly, clients found "keyword search ads" performed better than display ads -- with the caveat that "station slogan or names of secondary on-air talent" did not make for effective search keywords.

Andrew Curran, DMR Interactive COO/Radio, said, "You can’t just set up a digital campaign and let it run. You need to constantly be managing and adjusting your efforts. The fact that we integrate digital marketing into a larger listener engagement strategy and are constantly monitoring and adjusting to optimize performance, helps drive such strong results for stations."

The third-annual RAIN Summit Midwest took place today at The Conclave Learning Conference in Minneapolis. 

ESPN.com to count only display ads viewable on a screen

Wednesday, May 16, 2012 - 11:40am

ESPN.com will license technology from startup RealVu to enable their advertisers to track whether a display ad actually appears on a user’s screen (rather than "below the fold" when a site viewer fails to scroll down).

"As part of the new pact, several test campaigns for (ad agency) Horizon clients will roll out this this month employing RealVu's technology, theoretically ensuring that only viewable impressions will be delivered," writes AdWeek

The ad industry is encouraging publishers to abandon the practice of tallying simple ad "impressions" (which may not ever even be seen), and instead track the number of ads that are "rendered" -- that is, displayed on a screen.

In 2010 MSNBC.com redesigned its site to "completely eliminate the possibility of below-the-fold impressions." AdWeek reports ESPN is considering a similar move.

Read more from AdWeek here.

Triton's Agovino wants radio to go for new revenue with online listening, not traditional on-air budgets

Friday, December 2, 2011 - 12:25pm

Mike AgovinoTriton Media COO Mike Agovino "took to the blog" this week to point out that with October's Webcast Metrics, the total measured online listening audience has now passed 1.6 million "Average Active Sessions (AAS)" for the "workday" daypart (M-F 6A-8P). [AAS is Total Listening Hours (TLH) divided by hours in the reported time period. Similarly to Arbitron's "Average Quarter Hour," you can think of it as "the number of listeners at an average moment within the time period." ]

The online radio audience measured by Triton Webcast Metrics, Agovino says, is growing by about 100,000 AAS every 3 months (see the chart on the right). Should the industry be able to maintain that growth, Internet radio will have a 3 million AAS by 2015 -- 10% of radio's total audience.Webcast Metrics AAS quarterly trends

Agovino took the occasion to explain how  radio's current audience is worth $650-$900 million in revenue to the industry (between pre-roll audio/video ads, instream audio ads, and display ads with typical CPMs).

But he makes another point here too. You may know Arbitron is planning to roll out an "integrated audience" measurement system (see today's top story) -- to tally listening to radio whether its online or over-the-air. Arbitron wants to allow radio to present the online audience using the same traditional broadcast metrics, thereby enabling ad buyers to more easily extend their buys across both platforms. But instead of combining listening, Agovino wants radio to create a new revenue channel. He's suggesting broadcasters should be able to dip into both marketers' broadcast and interactive budgets alike.

"The dimensions of online audio expand the offering way beyond sound to include the interactive, targeting and visual benefits of online ads," he wrote. "Digital, mobile and social budgets are prime targets for this base of impressions... Selling the online audience with the on-air audience relegates publishers to fishing in the same revenue streams as they have always fished. These are not the budgets that are growing, but rather the ones that are shrinking."

Read more from Triton Media COO Mike Agovino here.

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