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    • 08/05/15
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Media Measurement
    • Global
    • English

    It’s research science, not rocket science

    I came across a job advert the other day from an advertising agency for a ‘Research Scientist’. Just to be clear, I was not looking for a new job having just acquired one! But it was the job title that caught my eye. They were looking for a data scientist who understood market research. Equally, they were looking for a market researcher who understood data science. Or something like that.

    Maybe advertising for a market researcher on its own does not have any allure; or that everyone is calling themselves data scientists these days, and Harvard Business Review called it the sexiest job of the 21st Century? Or maybe it is an acknowledgement that just being one or the other is no longer sufficient in our fast-moving, mobile-first, media world? Or maybe they are one and the same nowadays anyway? Whatever it is, one does wonder though where these people are going to come from. Given the relatively recent hype around big data, it would need some fast-tracked Darwinian intervention to provide a ready-made talent pool of ‘research scientists’.

    In my experience, a dedicated data science team sitting alongside, or interspersed with, researchers, as can often be found in market research companies today, can yield fantastic benefits – whether it is broadening the skill sets and experience of both sets of individuals, or delivering the optimum project team to clients. Collaboration really is king.

    A fine example of this is with MMS in Sweden, the body that oversees the television audience measurement. There are a number of data streams from different sources and different companies providing the audience data. GfK will integrate these datasets into a single Total Video Currency through methodological consultancy and data science expertise. That really is research science in action.

    Whilst data fusion is not a new concept in media research (the German industry research body, AG.MA, started developing applications in the 1970s), it demonstrates that integrated analytics of data are now laying the foundation stones for today’s audience measurement across all media. This is important because both cost and participant burden preclude designing a vast single-source study from scratch. In simple terms: optimise the component parts and weld them all together. It’s not rocket science.

    John Carroll is Head of Audience Measurement for UK, Nordics & Baltics at GfK. He can be reached at john.carroll@gfk.com or followed on Twitter @MediaCarroll

    • 08/04/15
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Media Measurement
    • United States
    • English

    GfK MRI Expands Digital, TV Focus with Strategic Hires, New Product Lines

    Kevin King (SVP, Mobile Measurement and Trends) and Karen Ramspacher (SVP, Consumer Insights) have joined a growing GfK MRI Product Innovation team.

    • 07/31/15
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Media Measurement
    • Global
    • English

    Why it’s time to go over the top with Over The Top TV

    Many pay TV operators are starting to feel that Over The Top (OTT) services may be overrated. Their TV Everywhere services just aren’t winning over enough subscribers in some markets.

    Yet, the OTT viewers are out there. In fact, they’re growing in number, and fast. Adobe reported in its Inaugural Video Benchmark Report that US pay TV subscribers viewing multi-screen video content nearly tripled from 4.4% to 12.5% between 2013 and 2014 *. The real problem for those with disappointing revenues is not a lack of viewers, but a failure to attract them. OTT viewers are being monopolized by subscription Video on Demand (VoD) services such as Amazon Prime and especially Netflix. Meanwhile just a handful of operators, such as Sky, are making their TV Everywhere services work alongside pure play offerings.

    The rewards too, are there for the taking. Successful TV Everywhere offers have proven to cut churn, and in some cases, even raise revenue per user through VoD sales. Viewed that way, OTT starts to look like a vital revenue stream to offset the potential risk being inflicted by the pure play operators on traditional pay TV packages.

    So if the viewer appetite and returns are in place, the important question for those losing out is: why aren’t viewers watching our OTT? In our experience, it comes down to one word: quality. Or rather, invest in creating quality content, then you can invest in promoting it. A shop in the busiest street in the world won’t succeed if customers don’t like what you’re selling.

    A case in point: a European operator recently contacted us for help understanding why their OTT service was under-performing. A significant number of consumers were using the service only once. We identified two issues, quality problems on low-end Android devices and failure to promote multi-screen content sufficiently. As a result, the operator was able to rectify the quality problems, identify the one-time viewers and convert them into repeat customers by promoting personalized content. The big picture? The operator now has satisfied, regular OTT users and a healthy ROI.

    Our message for operators, then, is simple. Don’t be halfhearted about OTT offerings. Commit. Invest. Craft. Create a beautiful user interface, offer personalization, and serve a quality of video that you’re proud to put your name to. Because you’ll only reap rewards when you go OTT with your OTT.

    To find out more about how we can help you with OTT, click here or contact Tom Weiss.

    *U.S. Digital Video Benchmark 2014 Inaugural Report, Adobe Digital Index, 2014.

    • 07/27/15
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Technology
    • Media Measurement
    • United States
    • English

    Lindner Joins GfK MRI in Senior Research Role

    Gregg Lindner, a research veteran with experience across all forms of media, has joined GfK MRI as EVP of Media Research, a new position at the consumer and media research provider.

    • 07/27/15
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Media Measurement
    • Global
    • English

    What is TV “viewing” now, anyway?

    Take a moment to recall “Back to the Future (Part 2)”. Now picture Marty McFly’s surprise if he’d hopped in his time-traveling DeLorean in 1985, emerged in 2015 and discovered that he can watch TV on a mobile phone.

    In his day people actually fitted their activities around the TV schedule. They’d drop what they were doing and head to their home’s designated viewing room to watch their favorite show.

    But, as we know, thanks to anytime, anywhere viewing technology, the TV landscape is now much more complicated – and so are the viewers. Taking the place of the old “Couch Potatoes”, are…

    Linears Arguably the most undemanding audience, “Linears” are happy to be passive, consuming content as it comes, when it comes. They pay for cable, but still watch live TV.

    TV 2.0s Determined to get the absolute most out of their TV set, the 2.0s pay for cable TV but also use digital services on their TV set.

    Traditional Time Shifters

    “Time Shifters” value scheduling flexibility but without embracing the online world. They pay for cable TV and watch either live or time-shifted TV using traditional services like DVR or Video On Demand.

    Digital Enthusiasts

    “Digital Enthusiasts” are willing to pay for quality content – in any channel. They subscribe to cable and three or more TV services online.

    Connected Bunny Ears The “Bunnies” don’t like to be tied down, hopping between free TV (they don’t pay for cable) and paying for over-the-air and digital content.

    On-the-Go Getters These digital converts don’t sit still long enough to watch an actual TV. They view all their TV content on mobile services and devices.

    Now think about the sheer complexity of advertising to these audiences. Consider that a “Digital Enthusiast” who loves film might catch a trailer online in the morning on his phone, arrange to see it with friends on Facebook, email a film review, start watching the film using a catch-up service on TV, all before falling asleep safe in the knowledge he can watch the end on his phone on the way into work. Now consider that another group, such as “On-the-Go Getters” will have a completely different journey. Zooming in further, consider that every individual viewer’s behavior will vary from day to day.

    What’s more, our most tech-savvy groups (“Digital Enthusiasts” and “On-the-Go Getters”) spread their viewing across many devices: laptops, videogame-connected TVs, HDTVs, smartphones, and more. If these folks are your targets, you can’t count on one platform to do your work for you.

    And you won’t find influencers conveniently in one place. Influencers in key product categories are likely to be found in two contrasting viewer groups – our more traditional “Connected Bunny Ears” and “Digital Enthusiasts”. So you’ll need to reach out not just to the digitally savvy, but the couch-bound.

    If knowing where and when to catch your audience is tricky, there’s also the small matter of creating the right content. Compared to the digital-savvy segments, we found that many more traditional TV watchers view advertising as unwelcome and uninformative. You’ll need to develop communications that don’t come off as ads, such as native content and product placement.

    Altogether, it’s more than enough to blow Marty’s mind.

    Clearly, there’s no such thing as a straightforward viewer journey any more. To understand the complexity of audience decisions, TV measurement needs large digital data trails (“machine data”) to gauge the scale of behavior. At the same time, it needs representative panel data (“human data”) to evaluate what individuals are doing. But here’s the crunch. Independently, both human and machine data are of limited use. Panels are usually too small to capture the full complex picture of choices viewers enjoy and machine data is too “dumb” to understand who – demographically and psychographically speaking – is behind the bigger trends.

    So at GfK we’re bringing Big Data and individual insight together. With the unrivaled breadth and depth of expertise at our disposal, we can offer macro events fused with rich, micro audience profiles – just what marketers need to succeed in the mixed up media world of 2015. And if you’d like to read more about Media Measurement, click here.

    We like to think that Marty Mcfly would be excited, but perhaps also disappointed that we haven’t started traveling by hoverboard. Sorry, Marty.

    For more information, please contact Dominique Vancraeynest at dominique.vancraeynest@gfk.com.

  • The power of direct context as revealed by GfK eye tracking
    • 07/22/15
    • Media Measurement
    • Global
    • English

    The power of direct context as revealed by GfK eye tracking

    In a recent paper published in the latest issue of Journal of Advertising Research, GfK eye tracking software was used to explore the visual impact of 187 magazine advertisements.

    • 07/15/15
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Media Measurement
    • Australia
    • English

    GFK WINS RADIO AUDIENCE MEASUREMENT CONTRACT IN NEW ZEALAND

    The Radio Broadcasters Association (RBA) in New Zealand has today announced that GfK will be its new official provider of radio audience measurement (RAM), beginning in 2016.

    • 07/13/15
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Media Measurement
    • Global
    • English

    Who would watch Live Aid today?

    Thirty years ago today (July 13, 1985), the nation was gripped to its television screens to watch Live Aid. It was a dual-venue charity concert in Wembley and Philadelphia, watched by around 170,000 in the two stadia and by a further 2 billion worldwide on live television. That’s nearly 40% of the planet’s population at the time. It was also simulcast on Radio 1 in the UK. Everyone talked about it and those of a certain age can remember where they were that day. Let us fast forward to today and consider who would watch Live Aid now.

    For a start, those in the stadium would not have both hands free to clap; they would be holding up their mobile phones and recording the event for sharing on YouTube or streaming live on Periscope. The television audience would still be relatively strong, certainly for share of viewing, but the armchair viewer may have also been simultaneously browsing through #LiveAid tweets. Such an all-day event does not really lend itself to enlarging the 3% of total TV viewing currently enjoyed on BBC iPlayer, although an edited highlights show could do well, as it does for Glastonbury. And what would it add to the 4 billion videos already posted daily on Facebook? Perhaps it would be streamed live on YouTube just as Felix Baumgartner’s record breaking sky dive was in 2012. And when the concert’s last act’s microphone fails at the start of a classic song, then maybe Oreo would post a ‘You can still dunk in silence’ ad.

    And what of Periscope? Back in May, the Twitter-based interactive live streaming service made piracy headlines as a number of people ‘broadcast’ the TV pay-per-view boxing event via their smartphones. It is a moot point whether those watching via the social media app would have paid to view anyway. Given Live Aid was free-to-view then the impact of Periscope would have been reduced to showing off to your friends that you were there.

    Simulcasting, multi-screening and sharing may have helped popularize the event, but I fear the unique intensity and seminality of the occasion, and corresponding level of audience engagement, would be diluted today. Everyone sitting at home in front of a television set feels more like a shared event than, well, a shared event in the social media sense. But then again, I’m old enough to remember Live Aid. And how many would go out to buy a Sunday newspaper the next day for all the pictures and reviews?

    The days are gone when measuring a TV audience would mean looking at a single ‘overnight’ figure the next day; although estimating the global audience size for Live Aid must have been an intriguing calculation. With many screens and platforms now available for viewing an event, the audience can choose when, where and how they watch, and the advertiser can tailor their message and context accordingly. Overlay all this with some measure of engagement, however defined, and there is a wealth of data available for broadcasters and advertisers to interrogate – probably too much data.

    And there lies the challenge in measuring audiences – one where there is an increasing emphasis on integrating different data sources, such as live broadcast, video and online, into a single data-set. It is not wholly dissimilar to BARB’s Project Dovetail ambitions and our recent contract win in Singapore for example.

    Above all, the return on investment for Live Aid was raising awareness and money for those starving in Africa, thereby underlining the unique power and effectiveness of live television, however consumed, whether the year is 1985 or 2015.

    John Carroll is Head of Audience Measurement for UK, Nordics & Baltics at GfK. He can be reached at john.carroll@gfk.com or followed on Twitter @MediaCarroll

  • USA: Four in Ten TV Viewers Are “Digital Enthusiasts” – Subscribe to 3+ Online Video Services Plus Cable TV
    • 07/09/15
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Media Measurement
    • Global
    • English

    USA: Four in Ten TV Viewers Are “Digital Enthusiasts” – Subscribe to 3+ Online Video Services Plus Cable TV

    As consumers embrace and experiment with a host of new ways of watching TV content, a new GfK MRI report has identified six new TV viewing audience groups in the US and how they combine emerging and traditional options for TV use.

    • 07/08/15
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Media Measurement
    • United States
    • English

    Four in Ten TV Viewers Are “Digital Enthusiasts” – Subscribe to 3+ Online Video Services Plus Cable TV

    As consumers embrace and experiment with a host of new ways of watching TV content, a new GfK MRI report has identified six new TV viewing audience groups and how they combine emerging and traditional options for TV use.

  • GfK continues TV and radio audience measurement in Belgium
    • 07/02/15
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Media Measurement
    • Global
    • English

    GfK continues TV and radio audience measurement in Belgium

    CIM has extended the contract with GfK to deliver television audience measurement (TAM) services in Belgium until the end of 2017. In addition, CIM has also re-signed GfK to measure radio audiences for two more years.

    • 06/15/15
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Media Measurement
    • United States
    • English

    At ARF Audience Measurement 2015, GfK Will Define Latest Trends in Digital, Linear Video Consumption

    At The Advertising Research Foundation’s Audience Measurement 2015 conference today, GfK will share new insights on consumers’ shifting use of digital and linear TV content platforms.

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