Watch Out, Nielsen ONE, Comscore Is Busily Building A Unified Cross-Platform Measurement Offering Of Its Own

Comic: Things no one asked, ever.

The cross-platform measurement gauntlet has been thrown down.

On Wednesday, Comscore announced plans to launch Comscore Everywhere, a cross-platform measurement suite that will eventually combine TV, connected TV, video, digital and social media measurement into one deduplicated offering.

Comscore will roll out its new suite in phases throughout 2022.

Nielsen, Comscore’s longtime rival, is also working on a cross-platform measurement solution called Nielsen ONE, which is set for release in the fourth quarter of this year.

In December, Nielsen kicked off alpha tests of Nielsen ONE with partners, including Disney and MAGNA, to measure deduplicated reach and frequency for ad campaigns across platforms.

Although Nielsen’s and Comscore’s respective moves are similarly motivated – media consumption is fragmented across channels and will only become more so – there’s a core difference between Nielsen’s planned offering and what Comscore is working on, said David Algranati, Comscore’s chief product officer.

The fact that Nielsen is developing its ONE solution at all is an acknowledgment that probability-sample-based panels are “insufficient to meet the measurement needs of the marketplace,” Algranati said.

“We feel that Nielsen is playing catchup ball to Comscore,” he said. “In a way, they’re coming into our game with their pivot from panels to large-scale data collection and trying to introduce features into their product that we already have in our offering.”

For example, Nielsen plans to release “sub-minute” commercial ratings to bring linear TV measurement more in line with what you get in the digital world. According to Algranati, Comscore offered a granular commercial ratings product going back to 2011.

Here, there and everywhere

Comscore Everywhere will provide a deduplicated view of media consumption and audience insights across screens and media types.

Specifically, the solution will bring together existing Comscore products into a single portfolio, including Comscore TV (national and local measurement for TV programming and ads), Media Metrix Multi-Platform (deduplicated measurement for audiences across the web and mobile) and Comscore Campaign Ratings (cross-platform campaign measurement for TV, OTT/CTV, desktop and mobile).

All of these products will remain available as stand-alone solutions while Comscore works on expanding and evolving the suite – and the tools within – over the course of the year.

“This is taking a lot of what’s been done in silos and launching it as part of a suite,” said Chris Wilson, Comscore’s chief commercial officer. “But it was very important to us to also have some of the components available today as we work towards bringing it all together.”

In August, for instance, Comscore added deduplicated CTV measurement for YouTube and YouTube TV to its Comscore Commercial Ratings product and is already actively measuring campaigns as part of a beta phase.

“Consumers don’t look at content in terms of linear versus streaming versus digital, which is why sell-side folks, like the big media companies, really need a holistic way to sell their entire portfolio across all inventory types,” Wilson said. “Buyers, meanwhile, need to be able to buy in the same way and understand how it all works together so they can deliver the best results.”

Comscore will also draw on its December acquisition of social media analytics and intelligence platform Shareablee to bolster Comscore Everywhere, said Comscore CEO Bill Livek.

“Our clients tell us that social media is a big piece of the future,” Livek said. “Shareablee has an embedded customer base that we can use to further advance our digital view of the consumer as it relates to social.”

Building blocks

Beyond the specific products that will eventually be available within Comscore Everywhere, there are three main building blocks that serve as the foundation for Comscore’s combined offering: multi-sourced data, identity management and interoperability with other identity systems and measurement capabilities.

Comscore pulls in data from multiple sources today, said Algranati. Comscore collects information through web tags and direct server-to-server integrations with digital publishers, Comscore’s own digital panels, set-top-box data from more than 36 million households in the US and opt-in automatic content recognition data from over 10 million smart TV devices.

“The identity piece is important for pulling all that information together, because we’re getting signals from multiple different sources,” Algranati said. “And in terms of interoperability, we make sure to work with different players in the ecosystem to refine the methodology.”

For example, Comscore provides the OpenAP TV audience consortium with reporting on cross-platform campaign performance data tied to the OpenID system.

Comscore is also in the midst of proof-of-concept testing for privacy-preserving, deduplicated cross-media measurement with the Association for National Advertisers.

Results from the first phase of the ANA test will likely be available later in the quarter.

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