Nielsen Audio Takes A Step Arbitron Never Took


Tired of complaining about ratings wobbles and insufficient data in a two-times-per year market such as Boise, Idaho?

It may be time to stop your whining and start winning in your market, thanks to a big step forward for radio station measurement brought forth by Nielsen Audio.

In a major announcement from the successor of what was once Arbitron, Nielsen revealed that it will “transform” the measurement of markets that are measured with the audio diary from a quarterly or two times a year view to year-round measurement with monthly reporting.

This means all of Nielsen Audio’s markets will receive data every 30 days — just like its electronically measured markets that utilize the Portable People Meter (PPM).

“Big billion dollar advertisers leave nothing to chance,” Nielsen Audio Managing Director Brad Kelly said. “Every decision they make is data driven and updated audience data is crucial for timely decisions. Nielsen Audio is excited to help diary market clients have a better understanding of the audio landscape and respond faster to dynamic market conditions. Continuous Diary Measurement will help radio reinforce its compelling reach story more often and provide fresh radio data to fuel Marketing Mix Models—the decision tools big advertisers rely on to allocate budgets and evaluate the effect of their ad spend.”

Just how will Nielsen Audio ensure the accurate and reliable delivery of diary-based ratings on a monthly basis?

The implementation of continuous diary measurement will begin in phases, with the first starting in July 2019 in the markets currently measured four times a year.

The current four-book markets will convert to 12 currency releases that will comprise three months of data starting with the May/June/July 2019 report period.

Jeffrey Warshaw, Connoisseur Media

“With digital advertising providing near real-time metrics and TV moving to a year-round model, audio needs to compete on a level playing field,” said Connoisseur Media CEO Jeff Warshaw, who serves as vice chair of the Nielsen Audio Advisory Council. “As a client and member of the Advisory Council, I’ve challenged Nielsen to think differently and deliver a better solution. This is an important step forward for diary market clients because it will help audio remain relevant in an environment where advertisers expect more timely data and greater accountability.  We should never forget that our advertiser clients are what matter most. They deserve the most timely data we can provide.”

Going forward, Nielsen plans to deliver monthly reports, covering six months of data in markets with at least 1,000 metro in-tab, and monthly reports covering 12 months of data in the smallest markets.

Currently, Nielsen reports larger diary markets four times a year (winter, spring, summer and fall), mid-sized diary markets twice a year in the spring and fall and the smallest markets with two book averages of Spring/Fall and Fall/Spring.