Twitter, Nielsen Team Up On Digital Ad Ratings


At 5pm Eastern, Nielsen Audio will release its first batch of April 2017 PPM-based ratings, which measure the exposure of a panelist who wears a metered device to AM and FM radio and/or the encoded streams of radio stations across PPM-measured markets.

Of course, Nielsen also measures television, and is increasingly asserting itself as a key provider of digital metrics.

It’s just solidified that desire a bit further, thanks to a global expansion of its measurement of Twitter mobile campaigns.

Thanks to a new deal forged today (5/15), Twitter mobile campaigns in 23 new global markets will get Nielsen metrics, in addition to the U.S.

“Through Digital Ad Ratings, Nielsen will now provide independent audience verification metrics for campaigns on Twitter’s mobile app globally, enabling clients to measure how effectively ads on the social platform reached their intended audience,” the company said. “With global consumers increasingly connecting with advertising through their mobile devices, Nielsen’s coverage of Twitter campaigns will provide clients around the world with an independent third-party measure of campaign performance.”

Digital Ad Ratings uses metrics “that are comparable to those used for TV,” Nielsen ads.

Twitter VP/Market Insight & Analytics Jeffrey Graham said, “As smartphone usage continues to grow and mobile is accounting for more of digital ad spend, it’s more important than ever that advertisers understand how effectively their marketing efforts are reaching their audience on Twitter.”

The Digital Ad Ratings announcement comes following the recent announcement by the National Football League (NFL) that it has selected Twitter as its exclusive partner to deliver a live “Over-the-Top” (OTT) digital stream of Thursday Night Football to a global audience across devices—and for free—during the course of the 2016 NFL Regular Season.

Twitter will stream the 10 Thursday Night Football games broadcast by NBC and CBS, which will also be simulcast on NFL Network, securing the league’s “Tri-Cast” distribution model of broadcast (NBC/CBS), cable (NFL Network), and digital (Twitter).

The NFL did not note in its announcement that it also enjoys a relationship with Cumulus Media-owned Westwood One for syndicated audio play-by-play coverage of Thursday Night Football matches; radio stations across the globe air the broadcasts, which are also available via TuneIn. The audio broadcasts feature Ian Eagle and Tony Boselli or Tim Ryan across the season.

The NFL has been a partner with Twitter through its “Amplify” program since 2013. In addition to live streaming video of NFL action, the partnership includes in-game highlights from TNF as well as pre-game Periscope broadcasts from players and teams, giving fans an immersive experience before, during and after games.

With this partnership, the NFL has again given the radio industry another challenge in retaining listeners, given the mobile ability to view not only live football action but shoulder programming that is exclusive to Twitter.

In a statement, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said, “Twitter is where live events unfold and is the right partner for the NFL as we take the latest step in serving fans around the world live NFL football. There is a massive amount of NFL-related conversation happening on Twitter during our games and tapping into that audience, in addition to our viewers on broadcast and cable, will ensure Thursday Night Football is seen on an unprecedented number of platforms this season. This agreement also provides additional reach for those brands advertising with our broadcast partners.”

Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s CEO, offered words that may lead some sports radio sales execs to question if what they’re doing to reach NFL fans is enough.

“This is about transforming the fan experience with football,” he said. “People watch NFL games with Twitter today. Now they’ll be able to watch right on Twitter Thursday nights.”

The 2016-2017 NFL season saw the first free global live stream of a regular-season NFL game on Twitter, and the first time users could access the NFL’s premium content worldwide, without authentication.

The expanded Digital Ad Ratings agreement with Twitter will allow clients to measure and optimize Twitter mobile advertising not only in the U.S. and Canada, but also in Mexico and Puerto Rico. For FOX, ESPN, NBCUniversal’s Telemundo, Univision, beIN SPORTS, and Hemisphere Media Group’s TV Dominicana, Centroamérica TV and WAPA América, this could present new opportunities as Twitter moves in on ways to attract more ad dollars from these pan-Latin sports players.

Digital Ad Ratings are also being extended to Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Poland, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, and the United Kingdom — with comprehensive global coverage of a client’s mobile campaigns on the social platform the key result Nielsen seeks to attain.

In the U.S., Twitter measurement has been available within Nielsen Digital Ad Ratings since May 2016.

In 2014, Nielsen launched what is now known as Social Content Ratings in 2014, which measures program-related activity on social media platforms like Twitter.

Nielsen and Twitter first launched Nielsen Brand Effect for Twitter in 2013, allowing advertisers in all global Twitter markets to measure impact of their “Promoted Tweets” on brand metrics such as message association, brand favorability and purchase intent.