That is one of the findings - a potential pattern of seasonality surrounding health club-based digital out-of-home media networks - to emerge from the second quarterly installment of the report, being released today.
And it's one of the reasons why Paul Lindstrom, the Nielsen executive who conceived the reports, is so excited about them. In the past he said, place-based screen networks would conduct custom, "one-off" studies that measured their own audience reach, but provided no context in terms of trends surrounding the larger digital out-of-home media marketplace. By combining an array of disparate networks operating in a range of out-of-home locations, Lindstrom said Nielsen is beginning to glean insights into the variations of both venues and seasonality.
"In the past, these were snapshots in time, and we really had no idea what happened during the rest of the year. Now we do," he told MediaDailyNews, adding that it would not be possible to track macro events, such as the affect of the economic recession on digital out-of-home media vs. the rest of the media marketplace.
Most importantly, he said, the report will only get better over time, as more networks sign up and as more of the digital out-of-home media marketplace becomes represented by it.
For example, Nielsen has added its first big retail-based screen network - electronics retailer Best Buy's screen network - to the report, effective with the first quarter installment, and he said at least two more big retailers would be represented in the second quarter report, providing new perspective on what is happening in those outlets, and allowing advertisers and agencies to compare them with other digital out-of-home locations.
According the first quarter report, Best Buy's video network accounted for 24 million gross video exposures per month during the quarter.
Overall, the place-based video networks included in both quarterly reports earned 11% more gross monthly exposures among adults 18 years and older in the first three months of 2010, on average, compared to the results posted in the fourth quarter 2009 report.
Lindstrom acknowledged that the Fourth Screen Report is different from other Nielsen studies, which have a fixed "universe" of users, but he said that is the nature of the digital out-of-home marketplace, which is constantly expanding and adding new users all the time.
Gross Monthly Digital Video Ad Exposures, P18+
The Hotel Networks
Source: The Nielsen Company