Starcom Cuts Ratings Deal With Twentieth TV
Traditionally, syndicators make advertising deals with media-buying agencies based on average ratings of a show's Monday through Friday telecasts. This includes talk shows, off-network comedies, court shows, and magazine programs--all of which represent the bulk of syndication programming.
"If a retailer just ran a commercial on Thursday, we would get the ratings for Thursday, not the average of the entire week," says Amy McMahon, associate activation director and lead syndication negotiator for Starcom USA. Starcom says this deal is a first for the industry.
The deal applies to all clients for all Twentieth's shows this fall, including "Family Guy," "The Morning Show with Mike and Juliet," "Cristina's Court," the new off-network drama "Boston Legal," and the new comedy "House of Payne."
"Our goal is to determine what a client's commercial has delivered," said McMahon. "I don't know if we are going to see variance."
Starcom has been a proponent of more granular viewer metrics, making deals with programmers on exact-minute ratings and striking other research arrangements with TiVo for second-by-second ratings analysis.
Many other programming dayparts are guaranteed to marketers, for the most part, on an average weekly rating. Some of these include late-night talk shows and early news programming. Prime-time broadcast programming and cable programming traditionally already offer day and date ratings guarantees.
"The industry is moving toward more accurate measurement," said Brad Adgate, senior vice president and corporate research director for Horizon Media. "It's a little more accurate. But I don't know if there is that much variation between, say, a Monday and a Friday [show]. It's a step in the right direction. But I don't think it's a big step."