Amazon Chooses Nielsen For ‘Thursday Night Football’ Ratings

Thursday Night Football Amazon Prime Video
(Image credit: Prime Video)

Amazon has picked Nielsen to measure how many people watch Thursday Night Football this season, which will be streamed nationally exclusively for the first time.

Nielsen will measure viewership of the game, plus the pregame and post game shows on Prime Video and Twitch. It will also count viewers watching in the teams’ home markets via local stations.

Nielsen said this is the first time a live program on a streaming service will be measured as part of its national TV ratings.

Also: Amazon Kicks Off Effort To Tackle ‘Thursday Night Football’ Sponsors

Nielsen, which dominated measurement of traditional viewing has been facing increased competition as more consumers turned to streaming. Nielsen said Amazon’s decision reinforces, “Nielsen’s ability to measure customers’ changing viewing behaviors and how content owners are distributing programming.”

“Excitement is building for this new era of Thursday Night Football. We are looking forward to delivering a new viewing experience and offering brands new ways to connect with current and future fans,” said  Srishti Gupta, director of media measurement, Amazon Ads. 

“Our collaboration with Nielsen will allow us to provide advertisers with familiar campaign measurement to make apples-to-apples comparisons across their multi-channel media investments,” Gupta said. “Additionally, advertisers will have access to metrics from Amazon that will provide actionable insights to understand brand awareness, engagement, and sales. This powerful combination of first and third-party measurement is something only Amazon can provide.” 

Thursday Night Football on Amazon will be measured and processed like all other NFL games, using Nielsen’s panel, allowing for the same metrics to be reported across all other national networks, continued trending, and comparability. 

Also: Amazon Buys Super Bowl Spot To Promote ‘Thursday Night Football’

“Nielsen is the long-time leader in the measurement space, providing gold-standard currency to the media industry and we’re thrilled that Amazon recognizes that and is working with us to bring a streaming service into our National TV measurement for the first time ever,” said Deirdre Thomas, managing director, U.S. audience measurement product sales at Nielsen. “We are committed to delivering comparable, comprehensive measurement of all audiences, across all platforms, and this agreement to measure TNF viewership is a testament to that commitment.”

Nielsen will begin measuring TNF on Amazon starting with a San Francisco-Houston preseason game on August 25. Amazon’s 15-game TNF regular season slate kicks off September 15 when the Los Angeles Chargers play the Kansas City Chiefs. 

According to Nielsen’s ratings, NFL games and shoulder programming such as pregame and postgame accounted for the top 27 live telecasts in 2021, and 47 of the top 50.  ■

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.