OnScreen Media Summit: Audience Measurement Still Evolving

OnScreen Media Summit: Complete Coverage from Broadcasting & Cable and Multichannel News

The field of audience measurement across TV, online and mobile has grown rapidly in the last twelve months, but still faces challenges in delivering the kind of data sought by advertisers.

"I feel like we're getting closer," said Cathy Hetzel, president advanced media and information division of measurement firm, Rentrak. "We are so much further along than a year ago. But we've got to get to frequency and overlap on the platforms. Advertisers want to know how many people and how long. The tough one is how often and how to do that across platforms." Ms. Hetzel spoke on an audience measurement panel at the OnScreen Media Summit, Tuesday.

Panelists also shared cross platform behavioral research findings. ESPN found that 58% of its customers were watching TV and online in the same minute. Heavy users of TV were also heavy users of online. "This has been the summer of cross media research at ESPN," said Glenn Enoch, VP of Integrated Media Research at ESPN explaining that use of one media, didn't necessarily mean less of another. "It's not a zero sum game."

"TV, audio, internet, mobile and print. We need to understand how they're moving between platforms," he said "We were careful to look at users and usage. Users are 50% female, usage number of minutes 75% was consumed by men."

Microsoft Advertising's global research director Beth Uyenco, said her company is trying to improve video search functions to help the consumer, the advertiser and the content providers track what's out there. Ms. Uyenco also identified another difficulty for the company: how to weigh multiple ad messages on the single PC screen. Microsoft is trying to get the answers by partnering on research projects, most recently with NBC Universal and media agency MediaVest.