Mobile Video Metrics Will Force TV To Adapt

mikedriscoll_tvOn TV And Video” is a column exploring opportunities and challenges in programmatic TV and video.

Today’s column is written by Mike Driscoll, CEO at Metamarkets.

With each passing day, mobile video consumption is becoming more prevalent and convenient.

In September, enhancements to mobile browsers removed a common deterrent to watching videos by enabling autoplay. Mobile is increasingly providing users with on-the-go access to their favorite content live as it happens, as the millions who watched Thursday Night Football via Twitter already this season can attest. Mobile video has become the frontrunner in the fight for marketing dollars.

Mobile video also offers a data advantage and much richer tapestry of engagement metrics over other formats. With a mobile video campaign, these new metrics open up specific and powerful insights: How long did viewers watch a video? Was it completed? Did they pause, mute, rewind or restart it? Where were they in the video when they clicked or closed it out? And most importantly, which audiences took each of these actions?

With traditional linear TV metrics, advertisers only understand in very broad strokes who their viewers are and get no details on which parts of the commercial inspired a response. Moreover, it can take days to get viewership and accurate engagement stats back from TV campaigns. Mobile has the clear advantage in building an understanding of where creative content is resonating. If advertisers can extract reliable, consistent data from one medium more than others, that’s where their marketing dollars will flow.

Since the dawn of television, advertisers have targeted their audiences along a single dimension of data: households. Mobile video refracts the static audiences of households into a matrix of time, space and individuals. Scheduled or on-demand, home or office, teen or parent – these categories previously existed only within the undifferentiated monolith of a household. Now that these new audience axes are directly addressable, it will take time for marketers and their agencies to adapt to these audience measures and create broader segments that slice across households to capture a unique and more valuable reach.

TV must adapt to the measurement revolution that mobile video is leading. Otherwise, mobile video will continue to chip away at TV ad budgets and dominate marketing dollars. Other mediums will also be pressured to adopt similarly insightful metrics to get on par with mobile video. With modern metrics applied to addressable TV campaigns, marketers will soon be able to much more accurately understand the true performance of their ads. Addressable TV will be wasteful if judged by traditional TV viewing metrics, so as this transition unfolds, we must apply attribution and measurement standards that mobile video has brought to the fore.

Advertisers looking to make the most of their advertising spend would be wise to identify publishers breaking ground in leveraging mobile video’s rich metrics to maximize their mobile spend, and traditional measurement vendors would be equally wise to learn from them and apply their learnings. The race is on to see who will inherit the throne that Nielsen built for TV.

Follow Mike Driscoll (@medriscoll), Metamarkets (@metamarkets) and AdExchanger (@adexchanger) on Twitter.

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