PASADENA, CALIF. — Pushing forward efforts to include as much nontraditional TV viewership as possible, NBC says it will now release daily digital video prime-time viewership estimates of TV shows airing the previous night.
The new daily data will be included with live program-plus-seven days of time-shifting data — L7 plus digital — says Alan Wurtzel, president of research and media development for NBCUniversal.
The digital estimates for TV viewing will come from tablets and other devices that are not measured by Nielsen. This includes: PC/laptop, tablet, smartphone, game console, OTT device, smart TV, Blu-Ray, video-on-demand after 4 days; DVR after seven days and out of home.
In a presentation at the Television Critics Association meeting here, Wurtzel said NBC would disclose on a daily basis initial live program-plus-same day ratings, as well as expected three-day, seven-day, and digital viewing estimates.
Nielsen’s slow-moving efforts around digital viewing have been an issue for NBC’s move — as well as other networks.
“Of course, we want cross platform (data), and of course we want Nielsen to do it,” says Nielsen. “We just can’t hang around and whine about the fact they are not doing it. We got to understand what is going on with the tools we have today.”
Wurtzel showed how specific NBC shows — including "The Blacklist,” “Parks & Recreation” and “Constantine” — rose in total viewership. It's not just from a week’s worth of time-shifting, but also what is added when from digital TV viewing.
For example, looking at the “The Blacklist” so far this season, the show has averaged a Nielsen live-plus-same day 2.7 rating among 18-49 viewers. But adding in three days of time-shifting totaled a 4.2 number; adding on seven days to the live-only ratings brings the total to 4.6.
Topping this off, NBC tacked on another 1.0 rating point from digital devices and/or platforms, bringing the total to a 5.6 rating during that seven-day period.
NBC’s viewing data for these shows come from Nielsen, Rentrak, Omniture, and the Hulu Portal for 18-49 viewers, and alternate platform data through 35 days.
Wurtzel says adding digital is important since it can amount to significant gains a whopping 37% for “Parks & Recreation”; 17% of the “The Blacklist” total ratings. “Parks & Recreation,” for the 2013-2014 season, grew from a 1.2 rating to a total of 2.7 rating -- with 1.0 rating coming from digital.
Even the lowly “Constantine” benefited greatly. The show averaged a 0.98 rating among 18-49 after its premiere when looking at live plus same day. It lifted to a total of 2.04 when looking at the live program-plus-seven days of time-shifting and digital. 17% of its total week long ratings came from digital devices/platforms.
“Much of the growth going forward will be with digital platforms,” says Wurtzel. “But just because we can’t measure it doesn’t mean it is not happening.