Univision Uses Nielsen Homescan to Track Consumer Purchases

Spanish-language broadcaster Univision Communications announced Wednesday that it is combining data from two separate Nielsen audience panels to calculate what it said is a return on investment by measuring changes in consumer purchases in connection with ad blitzes.

The new wrinkle is integrating Nielsen Homescan data, which use bar-code scanners in households to track shopping, with TV-viewing data.

Univision executive vice president of corporate research Ceril Shagrin said the in-home, self-administered system of Homescan captures purchases made in small stores patronized by Hispanics that otherwise would not be tracked, since in-store scanners are mostly in big stores.

In a presentation to journalists, Shagrin added that seeing how product purchasing is impacted after an ad blitz lets consumer-goods marketers see if “they moved the needle” and by how much. “Do you have people buying your product now that previously bought your competitors’ products?” she continued. “These data were not achievable before.”

Univision will also use this “fused” purchasing/ad-spend data from Nielsen to make the case to advertisers that their ad spend is underweight in the Hispanic demographic.

Shagrin said Spanish-speaking panels for Homescan are available only for Los Angeles, but Nielsen will measure Hispanic panels in 20 other cities by year-end, which can generate a national sample.

The TV data and consumer purchasing figures come from two separate household samples in the same region. That’s because of difficulty in getting consumers to permit installation of two types of monitoring systems in their homes.