Introducing A More Comprehensive Way to Measure Audience and Digital Content

For years, Publishers have used Adobe Analytics to gain audience engagement insights from web properties, mobile apps and online video. Publishers need to know how consumers are engaging with their content in real-time to understand how many stories are being read, how many ad impressions are occurring, the number of videos being watched and how many concurrent viewers are watching them. These and other key performance indicators are the fuel that empowers publishers to drive revenue across their digital channels.

Traditionally, programmers have had another data set to consider – syndicated data, or ratings data – and until now, they have been required to reconcile between the two. These two data sets have lived in different worlds, but that’s about to change.

Adobe is excited to announce we’re partnering with Nielsen to develop the Nielsen Digital Content Ratings, Powered by Adobe. The Digital Content Ratings, which will be available to consumers in 2015, will integrate census-based Adobe Analytics data into the Nielsen ratings. And content of all types, including web, mobile and video, across desktop, mobile and tablet devices will be consistently measured, so that publishers and advertisers gain better insight into the performance of digital content.

What does this mean for the industry?

Census-based analytics data may be the answer to effectively measure online audiences. By incorporating census-based data, where every viewer is counted, we are developing a more consistent metric that represents the actual online audience. This should dramatically reduce ad wastage as well as boost CPM’s for programmers and operators by providing measurement of each viewer who is actually engaging with content on any device.

Explosive Online TV Viewing: Web, Apps and Video

The way people are consuming content is changing with explosive growth of online television viewing across a plethora of devices. According to the latest Adobe Digital Index – Video Index Report released earlier today, online television viewing has grown 388 percent year-over-year, which was boosted by the recent World Cup, March Madness/NCAA Basketball Tournament, and the Olympics.

Mobile devices are now ubiquitous for watching online video and consuming content, and over-the-top (OTT) devices (including game consoles and set top boxes) are becoming an increasingly common tool to watch TV online. In fact, OTT devices now account for 10 percent of online television viewing, up from 3 percent in 2013.

The volumes of data, coming from so many different connected devices, has made it challenging for publishers and advertisers to accurately measure audiences and content consumption. By incorporating Adobe Analytics data into Nielsen Digital Content Ratings, the metrics for audience and content are going to be better aligned and more consistent to improve ad targeting, forecasting, and planning which will reduce ad impression wastage.

Currently, publishers are gaining relatively few marketing insights from OTT devices,** **resulting in a missed opportunity to understand those audiences for targeting. With OTT usage increasing 194% year over year (see the Adobe Digital Index Q2 2014 Video Benchmark), it is critical that those views are accurately measured and leveraged for digital marketing opportunities.

TV and Digital Coming Together

As the transformation from TV to digital continues to accelerate, a consistent way of measuring online television viewing regardless of device type is increasingly more critical. Census-based measurement will ultimately increase impression counts as it takes into account all views regardless of the market. This new approach to measurement will enable advertisers to be better positioned to allocate marketing dollars across platforms, and media companies to benefit from increased insights into the performance of web content and online TV viewing across screens. I look forward to sharing more thoughts on this important trend in the future.