NBCU touts new metrics for ads during Olympics

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NBCUniversal, which has been active in finding alternatives to Nielsen for audience measurement, touts some measures that could encourage its Olympic advertisers.

The whimsical metrics show that NBC’s coverage of the Beijing Winter Olympics has fewer ads and those hard-working ads, the kind of data NBCU believes is important for companies that write big checks to sponsor the games.

The traditional tally of total viewers, even using NBCU’s Total Audience Delivery metric combining data from Nielsen and Oracle to capture all TV audiences, indicated a 43% drop in viewership, compared to PyeongChang Winter Olympics four years ago.

At a time when ratings are plummeting and cable cuts are rampant, the drop comes as no big surprise.

Also: NBCU leverages iSpot as first cross-platform TV metering alternative to Nielsen

But according to one of the new measurement companies NBCU is working with, iSpot.TV, primetime Olympic programming has a 14% lighter ad load than other primetime programming. At the same time, the Olympics generates 247% more ad impressions per unit than the other three major broadcast networks.

These ads are watched from cover to cover. iSpot, which measures ads by the second second, tells NBCU that ads during the Olympics have a 98% completion rate. This translates to a 13% lower ad interruption rate than ads on all TV shows.

iSpot also said the best-performing commercial on February 4 occurred at 9:41 p.m. ET as skater Karen Chen walked off the ice. The ad most popular with consumers was that of Delta.

The Olympics had a 23.01% vote share on Feb. 5, despite competition from the NHL All-Star Game, a Duke-North Carolina college basketball game and an NBA game featuring the return of LeBron James after an injury. The Olympics nearly doubled the No. 2 TV broadcast in voice share.

Data from two other measurement companies, Phoenix and EDO, showed that for Olympic advertisers, brand recall and message recall were up 53% and 70% compared to standards for broadcast and cable ads. .

Ad popularity was 88% higher than normal, and the likelihood of searching for brands was 39% higher than advertisers during the prime-time opening ceremony. During the Tokyo Olympics, the likelihood of searching was 20% higher and in Korea it was 32% higher, according to EDO. ■


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