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Why we need accurate cross-media audience measurement

2:08 PM, 2 September 2019

There are a wide range of metrics we use to determine audience reach and exposure for advertising, but these metrics can’t be easily compared across media channels. Advertisers need better information.

As media consumption changes and advertisers run integrated campaigns across different platforms and devices, the need to measure accurately and consistently across different media has become important for advertisers and their media agencies. Advertisers are currently unable to accurately compare audiences between television and online platforms, let alone other media.

Crucial information on audience attributes is missing, as well as what your campaign has delivered cumulatively across the media, platforms and publishers. The issue lies with the inability to make reasonable comparisons between traditional, linear television and video or social audiences.

Consistency is the heart of the problem. How can you accurately compare media channels when the standards are different throughout various forms of media?

Since the data we have access to is based on different standards, marketers are unable to accurately understand the return on their investments across media types.

Advertisers know that the first step to gaining accurate insights is transitioning to a consistent audience measurement currency – one that enables comparison across media, rather than looking at each media format differently.

Addressing the burning need for cross platform analysis

In order to shift across to transparent cross-media measurement, the challenge needs to be addressed collectively with advertisers, agencies, media and research vendors. Everyone must play their part to back-up changes and provide support from their industry.

One of the major challenges we face is the way in which a television audience is analysed.

The current method of measurement doesn’t align to reveal the true results of audience engagement.

With the growth of Connected TVs and OTT viewing, TV is entering a more digital space. And yet, audience engagement is still predicated on panels and ‘people meters’ – a world apart from the census measures offered in digital.

Other platforms have a range of different ‘metrics’:

  • Instagram and Facebook: likes, and shares

  • Websites: average time spent on a page, keyword performance

  • Email marketing: opens and links followed

  • And the list goes on...

No one said this was going to be easy

Most organisations understand that moving towards a consistent cross media management and audience measurement is absolutely necessary. It will enable businesses to respond accurately and gain insight around their advertising campaigns.

However, differences in measurement methodology stand in the way of a simple solution. This means that our measurement parameters need to be constantly reshaped to allow for the clarity of our results.

Some key differences standing in the way include:

  • Opportunities-to-see vs served impressions

  • Exposure during a time interval vs passing a 2-second minimum threshold

  • Persons-based media behavior vs what is going on in the household

  • Rating points vs impressions

These may appear easy to fix on the surface, but don't be fooled. The major stumbling blocks are found from the technologies used across the world, and the currency used to buy or sell to audiences.

These variables must be navigated around in order to achieve transparent cross media management

How are ANZA getting involved?

ANZA is currently working with the Comms Council to accelerate the process of achieving cross media measurement, whilst also tackling the hurdles faced by our diverse range of media platforms.

Together, we’re working to enable marketers to measure and duplicate every impression in an always-on, privacy-safe, holistic cross media measurement fashion.

The future benefits of achieving an improved alignment of cross platform metrics

An improved understanding of how individual media impressions will drive business outcomes toward higher success. With smarter media planning ultimately comes more accountable media investment.

Want more? Get in touch if you would like to get involved or know more about cross-platform audience measurement.


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