Commentary

BPA Makes Needed Changes To Circulation Audits Amid Coronavirus

Audience data auditor BPA Worldwide made a permanent change to its data reporting requirements as the coronavirus pandemic disrupts the circulation marketing efforts of publishers, especially B2B media outlets.
Publishers now have the leeway to opt out of reporting "age of source" data that indicate how recently they acquired subscribers. The BPA had let publishers break out that information in segments of within one, two and three years -- or to claim a single number for each category.
The change comes as publishers face greater difficulties in reaching readers working from home, disrupting their direct-marketing efforts aimed at renewals and new subscriptions.

BPA is currently compiling the data for its June 2020 Brand Reports.

For next year, BPA is giving publishers another way to report recent interactions with readers to show that their audience data are accurate.  
Starting in August 2021, publishers that don't report age of source data and have circulation from a source that’s older than two years will be required to report "recency of engagement" data.
The reporting is currently optional. It may help publishers show recent interactions with readers whose consent is older than two years. Publishers also are permitted to report that data even if their they are one to two years old, according to the BPA.
Audience engagements can include reader visits to a publisher's website, online purchases, opened email newsletters, magazine requests, webinar attendance or other communication with a publisher.
As publishers enrich their communications with readers to include more digital interactions, the audience reporting requirements are also evolving. That's an important step in their monetization strategies and providing value-added services to advertisers.

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