Thursday, July 20, 2017

'The Download' Explores Podcast Measurement

Podcasting is not simply a new spoken-word radio format, it is something altogether different. In fact, similarities between radio and podcasting are few and far between.

AM/FM radio is primarily live, local, mainstream and short-form content, consumed in real time on analog devices. Podcasting, on the other hand, is primarily time shifted, international, niche with long-form content featuring on-demand consumption, downloaded on digital devices.

Dr. Billy Ray McKim
As a result, according to Dr. Billy Ray McKim, an expert on audience measurement research and associate professor at Texas A&M University, “a new approach is needed to effectively measure and monetize podcasting. An approach that transcends PPM and diary methodologies or the current practice of relying on download metrics without third-party validation.”

The Download on Podcasting research team has spent time with Nielsen to better understand the opportunities that exist with their census-based SDK measurement platform. Based on our analysis, SDK provides a great opportunity for podcasters and advertisers alike. Complete findings are available in the newly released report, The Download on Podcasting Presents: An Overview of Audience Measurement with Nielsen Audio.

Andrew Curran
According to Andrew Curran, President and COO of DMR/Interactive, “the lack of third-party measurement is holding back the monetization of podcasting. Until we have an agreed upon currency, podcasters will earn a small fraction of the available digital dollars.”

Because podcasts are a digital medium, additional measurement techniques can be employed, beyond using a traditional panel. Nielsen SDK uses big data and a census-style approach that matches demographic information in a privacy-safe way via data providers, such as Facebook.
Rob Kass

Rob Kass, Vice President of Digital Audio with Nielsen continues, “rather than measuring just downloads and server traffic, we are putting our measurement on the device at the point of consumption.”

In addition to providing a more granular form of measurement, Tony Hereau, Vice President of Audience Insights with Nielsen believes “there are exciting opportunities to match product purchase behavior with podcast consumption, which will further assist podcasters in their pursuit of digital ad dollars.”

The opportunity exists for podcasting to benefit from a third-party, census-based measurement platform such as Nielsen SDK. By establishing a trusted currency, podcasting can continue to mature as an audio platform and accelerate its revenue growth.

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