SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – The business of TV ad-buying is fast transforming itself from one which was reliant on Nielsen as a single arbiter of viewer numbers.

With Nielsen’s MRC accreditation still paused, more broadcasters are testing out alternative currency and measurement solutions.

In this video interview with Furious Corp CEO Ashley Swarts at Beet.TV’s Beet Retreat, Travis Scoles, SVP, Advanced Advertising, Paramount, explains why those are two different things – and what happens next.

Matching big data

“Most alternate measurement sources that we’re seeing in the market today are big data sources,” Scoles says.

“They have millions and millions of set top boxes or TV sets or some of these other data collection mechanisms behind it.

“So, when folks want to come and match their first-party or third-party data to those data sets, it’s matching big data to big data.”

Measurement vs currency

Measurement and currency both have new-wave suppliers. But Scoles was asked how they differ.

“For a very long time, I think they were the same thing,” he says. “We always talked about them interchangeably because it was just GRPs (gross rating points), that’s all we traded against, that’s all we measured with.

“But the world is changing. It’s changing because of the fragmentation of viewership, new technology and those things.”

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Scoles says “measurement” encapsulates techniques like  uncovering cross-platform reach and cross-platform frequency.

By contrast, he says: “Currency is what we used to actually trade against. It’s what the guarantee is structured against.

“We need to separate those concepts in our minds so that we can take best advantage of what each one of those things offers.”

New-wave currency movement

Several MVPDs are this year testing out new measurement and currency options for trading multi-platform video and TV ads, weaning themselves off the traditional Nielsen panel.

The MRC is now due to audit Nielsen, but that isn’t expected until the end of Q3 2022.

Nielsen has been developing an audience measurement product called Nielsen One with plans to fully transition to its cross-platform metric in 2024.

It will combine big data sets with a geographically representative panel of viewers and an identification resolution system to validate deduplicated exposures to ads and content.

Change is coming

Paramount’s Scoles thinks the industry will have to go from a single measurement agency to several.

“When all of this settles out, I think that we’ll have several key players and that really publishers like us will be agnostic to who you choose,” he says.

“There will be broad publisher support for a basket of currency measurement providers and the buy side will actually select which dataset based on its unique pros and cons best fits their advertiser’s needs and their advertiser’s strategy. That’s really where we’re heading.”

Scoles says change is coming, even thanks to Nielsen’s own response to the environment.

“Once Nielsen ONE comes, everything’s different anyway,” he says. “So we’re all going to rebuild our processes, our workflows and our tech stacks, and I think that we’re going to see a whole bunch of new things come out as a result.”

You are watching coverage from Beet Retreat San Juan 2022, presented by AppScience, Infillion, MadHive, SpringServe, Univision & VideoAmp. For more videos, please visit this page.