The expansion of over-the-top (OTT) and set-top box video on demand (VOD) inventory has led to many calls from marketers to bring solid metrics to those charged with plotting a media buying and planning strategy.
Now, those calls are being heeded by the dominant audience measurement company in the U.S., and a unit of Comcast.
The unit, FreeWheel, is teaming with Nielsen to expand measurement to over-the-top and STB video on demand inventory.
The effort, Nielsen says, “will enhance the value of the television ecosystem through additional data-enabled, targetable premium digital video platforms for programmers, MVPDs, agencies and advertisers to effectively reach consumers.”
The announcement comes six months after Nielsen confirmed that it was integrating Comcast’s non-personally identifiable TV viewing data with its panel data.
Specifically, Nielsen will work with FreeWheel to expand efforts aimed at unlocking greater understanding of the total television marketplace, allowing advertisers to take advantage of additional impressions and expanding overall TV ecosystem market liquidity via FreeWheel Advertisers, Markets and Publishers divisions.
“Nielsen is committed to building measurement solutions that account for the entire television ecosystem, from linear and — in view of our plans with Comcast and FreeWheel — across over-the top and set-top box video on demand inventory,” said Megan Clarken, Global President of Nielsen’s Watch segment. “This solution will be critical to further unlock the power of television, wherever and however a consumer is watching that content.”
Comcast Cable President of Advertising Marcien Jenckes added, “The work Comcast and FreeWheel will be doing with Nielsen to make television, in all its forms, data-enabled, targetable and measurable is another step to unify TV as a platform. These efforts will add to the robust picture of viewership trends, further strengthening the currency used by the entire TV industry.”
Nielsen and FreeWheel plan to provide more details about this broader initiative “ahead of the 2019 TV Upfront,” meaning it could be upward of 10-11 months before a full portrait of their plans is painted.