Chapell & Associates

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

New Tracking Technology Measures Video-on-Demand Ads

Adage - September 30, 2005
It's the Holy Grail of accountability, and for video on demand, it's right around the corner. Marketers just moved a step closer to knowing who's actually watching their ads, thanks to a beta test by Rentrak, which now has a product to measure commercials watched as part of the cable industry's free video-on-demand service. "The advertising industry is eager to be able to separate measurement of [individual shows] vs. measurement of the ads," said Cathy Hetzel, Rentrak's senior VP, On Demand Essentials, which tracks program viewing. The Portland, Ore., firm tracks media transactions in all manner of businesses, from home video rentals to the box office.

The Chapell View
Apologies in advance for using a tired old Internet term from the late 90's, but Accountability is the Holy Grail for any advertiser. Accountability is the term used by every CMO when they talk about online advertising - and with good reason.

So its no surprise that the Cable Television industry is looking to better understand who is watching their ads, and to targets ads based upon the person viewing them.

What's interesting is that few (if any) of the cable guys seem to pay much attention to the lessons learned by the online targeting and measurement world. How much information should the cable guys obtain from viewers? Should PII be part of the equation - do advertisers need to know exactly who the viewer is in order for this to work? How long should profiles be stored and used for targeting and measurement? How much of these processes should be communicated to the cable viewers? How much data needs to be transferred to third parties in order to facilitate such data sharing?

Somebody over there had better be thinking about these issues...
posted by Anonymous on Wednesday, October 12, 2005

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