On Tuesday, Nielsen contacted 75 of its clients including advertisers, agencies and media companies to invite them to a 10/16 meeting to get input on how to proceed with a possible merging of TV and online audiences.
The letter (see the PDF link at the top right of this page we highly recommend you read it), invites clients to “a special client meeting in New York City to discuss ‘TV Everywhere, Online and OnDemand’ and similar initiatives and their implications for television audience measurement.”
These initiatives are very compatible with Nielsen’s television ratings system; that is, audiences viewing television programs online could be included in Nielsen’s national TV ratings, including C3.
Nielsen spokesperson Gary Holmes tells RBR-TVBR: “Ever since we launched A2/M2 three years ago, we’ve been sort of building towards the point where we would include internet measurement in our TV ratings panel. And the recent announcement about TV Everywhere, Online and OnDemand provided the impetus for us to move forward with that measurement to include both in the same panel. This is something we have been testing in a variety of different ways. We currently have a test in the TV panel with 375 households that are measuring both. We wanted to find out from a wide selection of the industry what their plans are and we wanted to tell them what our plans are – and make sure that we’re on the same wavelength.”
Any reaction so far?
“I think people are excited to come to the meeting and they are glad we called it. We look forward to this discussion,” he told us.
Shari Anne Brill, Senior Vice President, Director of Strategic Audience Analysis, Carat, tells RBR-TVBR: “The purpose of the meeting is discuss the work that Nielsen has been doing to develop the capability to measure online video viewing in the National People Meter panel. They have done quite a bit of work with regard to Extended Screen Initiatives (such as TV Everywhere and On Demand Online) which treat the computer as another screen in the home that is used to watch TV) and their implications for TV Audience measurement. Their plan is to capture viewing that takes place on line and add it in to TV ratings.. I will know more after I attend the 10/16 meeting.”
The event will take place at the Harvard Club of New York City on 10/16 at 2.00 p.m.
RBR-TVBR observation: While many may think Nielsen is being proactive here in the wake of the recently-announced Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement (CIMM), the company tells us it is definitely not. CIMM is likely to issue request for proposals (RFPs) in the coming weeks. Nielsen may or may not participate.