NEWS11 February 2011

Hopes raised for ad-specific ratings as Nielsen adopts Ad-ID

Data analytics North America

US— Hopes have been raised that ratings for individual TV commercials, rather than commercial breaks, could soon be a reality after Nielsen agreed to adopt the Association of National Advertisers’ (ANA) Ad-ID system.

ANA president Bob Liodice (pictured) said Nielsen’s decision to use Ad-ID in combination with its existing watermarking technology was “a critically important step” towards a world in which brand owners would be able to find out how many viewers their ad spots get over the course of a campaign run.

Ad-ID was launched eight years ago by the ANA and the American Association of Advertising Agencies as a replacement for the old ISCI commercial coding system that had been used to identify TV commercials since the 1970s.

Nielsen will be able to use Ad-ID, with its watermarking technology, to deliver commercial ratings, competitive analysis and commercial verification at the national, syndication and local levels, and across media platforms, the ANA said in a statement.

At the moment Nielsen only reports ad viewing as the average of all commercial minutes viewed live or in playback during a particular television programme. But tests a year ago demonstrated it was technically possible to measure viewing for individual commercials in the home – though refinements still needed to be made to the technology.