Nielsen and IAB measurement will help TV take on online video through mobile

By Rosie Baker and Sarah Homewood | 13 October 2014

The cross platform measurement service slated to be developed by Nielsen under the new contract awarded by the IAB today, is likely to help TV networks ward off the impact of digital video viewing in Australia, and drive digital ad growth, as it has in the US.

The Australian Financial Review is reporting today that US TV networks are plotting a "counter offensive" to the growth of YouTube and online video. Megan Clarken, the global head of digital at Nielsen, told The AFR the cross platform ratings system that went live in late September is boosting the networks because for the first time they can get TV ratings credit for online streams, and charge advertisers accordingly to advertise on digital channels. She said it means networks are starting to stream all broadcast content to mobile devices live and on-demand.

A spokesperson for Nielsen told AdNews that what Clarken is referring to as happening in the US now, is likely to play out here down the line. In the US, Nielsen also handles TV ratings, while that is provided here by OzTam. OzTam is currently working on adding digital measurement to its ratings, and is expected to make further moves by the end of the year.

Nielsen added that its experience in the US where it leads cross-platform measurement, was likely to have been a contributing factor to it retaining the IAB contract, but that a host of local factors were important.

Alice Manner, CEO of the IAB, told AdNews that what gave Nielsen an edge was its proposal’s particular strengths in mobile measurement, one of the main criteria.

“When you think about six months ago we had 50% of publishers receiving most of their traffic from mobile, they say that now that's increased even more for some publishers, so mobile is incredibly important and was a key factor,” Manners said.

“The other one was the cross audience digital network, so for the first time you'll have a total audience from desktop, smart phone and tablet and that means website, video and mobile app and again this is what we need to keep moving forward in digital.”

Moving forward Manners believes that accurate measurement will help the online advertising industry continue to experience year-on-year growth.

“If you look at how online revenue has been – we've had double digital growth year-on-year and we're a sizable portion of the total ad spend so this will continue to support that because it will enable planners to continue plan and buy across all digital devices,” she said.

“What is really important to highlight when it comes to digital audience measurement is Australia is well ahead of the rest of the world that was a really useful insight for me looking at the process and it just meant that a global one size fits all solution wouldn't work, not for our market.”

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