“As the local TV ad sales business evolves, and as audiences’ consumption habits change, so must the metrics we use to give marketers and advertisers measurement,” notes Frank Comerford, Chief Revenue Officer and President of Commercial Operations for NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations.
With that statement, the entity that owns and operates both NBC and Telemundo broadcast TV stations shifted away from traditional ratings points to gauge an advertising campaign’s effectiveness.
In the prepared remarks sent to RBR+TVBR, Comerford confirmed that, effective immediately, all NBC and Telemundo owned stations will use impressions to measure an ad campaign’s effectiveness.
“This is a game-changer for local,” he said. “I’m pleased the NBC and Telemundo owned stations are taking the necessary steps to innovate and deliver a more accurate cross-platform metric that will help our clients better understand the effectiveness of their campaigns across our platforms.”
News of the shift was first reported on Tuesday by Axios, which obtained a copy of an agency pitch document.
Axios noted that the shift by NBCUniversal matters because broadcast radio and TV are the “last forms of media to still rely on traditional ratings points to measure the effectiveness of an ad campaign.”
Most other media use cost per impression (CPM) to measure an advertisement’s effectiveness.
Quoting the agency document, Axios says NBCUniversal is adamant that cross-platform measurement be used to properly assuage advertiser needs. “Consumers no longer only watch TV in a traditional linear fashion – rating points only measure linear television. Local TV needs to measure video viewing across all platforms.”
As Axios noted, most local TV stations have websites and apps that distribute content on multiple platforms. However, “an antiquated ratings system” has made it hard for broadcast TV to sell against any kind of digital viewership, it suggested.
Now that NBCUniversal has made the move, Axios expects others within the Big Four to follow suit.