ANA, 4As, CIMM Probe Industry Transition To 'Multi-Currency' Marketplace

Three important ad trade bodies – the Association of National Advertisers, the American Association of Advertising Agencies, and the Advertising Research Foundation’s Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement (CIMM) – Thursday said they are fielding a new study to “explore the industry’s transition to a multi-currency TV market in the U.S.”

The study comes as a perfect storm of developments have led up to a Babel-like 2022-23 upfront marketplace, in which a variety of “alternate” currencies are being promoted alongside the industry’s legacy currency – Nielsen – and not one of them currently is accredited by industry self-regulatory body, the Media Rating Council.

While most media buyers have indicated they plan to mainly utilize alternate audience measurement providers as a “secondary currency,” with Nielsen’s still being used as the primary basis of audience estimates and guarantees, this year’s marketplace is expected to more tumultuous than normal as buyers and sellers haggle not just over price, but over the audience estimates their deals are based on.

“There are good reasons to be positive about recent developments,” CIMM Managing Director Jon Watts said in a statement announcing the study, adding, “However, there are also important uncertainties about how the transition will work in practice, the implications for planning and buying, and the challenges of navigating across and between different measurement solutions, leading at least some industry participants – including smaller networks, major agency groups and advertisers – to voice concerns. Our goal with this study to identify priorities for industry collaboration and cooperation to support the industry during this transition.” 

While the organizations did not disclose the methodology or time frame for completing the study, they said it will “explore a range of issues,” including:

  • Perspective on what is lacking in TV currency measurement.

  • Opportunities, challenges and risks presented by a transition to multiple currencies.

  • Steps that different TV networks are taking to support their ad sales, advertising clients and partners with measurement offerings.

  • Levels of confidence of key stakeholders about the ability of the industry to make progress in key areas.

  • Potential impact of the transition on advertiser investment and on the wider TV ad market.

  • Approaches different agency groups are taking to support their clients and to upgrade planning and buying tools and platforms.

  • Perspectives on standards and accreditation for currency measurement vendors.

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