We need standards. That’s long been the rallying cry of online video. But another rallying cry has been — we’re different from TV, so measure us differently.
Ah, but you can’t really have it all. Because it turns out that the legacy medium with its reach and frequency GRPs may win in the metrics battle for online video. The trend started with Tremor Video inking its Nielsen deal last fall to incorporate Nielsen’s ratings GRPs into online video buys to give advertisers a metric for gross reach across screens. Then came AOL Video last month, which also linked up with Nielsen as AOL’s video chief Ran Harnevo noted that a common currency of reach and frequency might help TV buyers to consider online video.
At the recent National Association of Broadcasters show, 4As chief Nancy Hill said to Beet.TV that these type of deals can shepherd in more bundled buys and apples-to-apples comparisons for buyers. With more side-by-side metrics, marketers might be able to shift dollars from one medium to another.
Finally, last week Brightroll said it will include third-party metrics such as GRPs in its data so that marketers can compare video campaigns and traditional TV.
Why this online video-GRP push now? Because even though online video is growing — eMarketer says it will rise 40% this year to reach $3.1 billion — it’s still a shot glass in the keg of TV dollars. To achieve scale, the industry needs to make buying easier. And so, the tried and true method of TV buying may in fact become the norm in online video.
The more things change, the more they stay the same.