Monday, May 5, 2008

The Search for New Audience Metrics

It's clear that the days of buying TV just on GRPs is already past for advertisers like Toyota and others. So the big question is, what else do you measure? That thing is what we call engagement.

-Robert Barocci, president of the Advertising Research Foundation

At a time when audience members are increasingly using niche media, advertising practitioners are concluding that the size of a medium's audience (as measured by GRPs, or gross rating points) does not necessarily reflect on it power to make the audience enthusiastic the media product or advertisements that surround it. For example, a cable program with a relatively small audience may be more valuable to an advertiser because its audience shows great devotion to the characters and pays more attention to the commercials connected to it than do audiences for especially popular television series. "Engagement" has become the new buzz word that marketers and media firms are using to express how connected audiences feel toward media and marketing materials. There is, however, much disagreement about what engagement really means and how to measure it.

In Robert Marich, "Measuring Engagement," Broadcasting and Cable, April 26, 2008.

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