Customers always benefit from competition. That’s why the announcement of comScore’s acquisition of Rentrak is great news for the advertising industry. The merger of these two will no doubt create a more equal and fierce battle with Nielsen. With both powerhouses fighting it out, marketers certainly should see greater improvements in accuracy and depth of measurement across multiple screens.
Video content remains the highest reach vehicle for most advertisers. And with the proliferation of viewing options available to consumers, the need to improve the efficacy and efficiency of targeted video campaigns will remain a top priority for both clients and their agency partners. This merger instantly creates a second major player that can measure set top box and digital video viewing data to go toe to toe with Nielsen Total Audience.
While they duke it out, let’s take a look at the ways advertisers will benefit from the combined technologies of comScore and Rentrak:
Targeting Precision - Set top box data offers targeting past age/gender from a linear perspective. Layering with digital data can help advertisers and agencies hone in on key target specifics.
Insight on Viewing Behavior - Based on target specifics, a combined viewpoint also helps identify where & what content target is consuming.
Growth of Addressability - Based on scale, opportunity to address target via first party matching via combination of set top box and digital data.
Regional Guidance - Assist advertisers in need of identifying key geographic support.
On Demand Measurement - Leverage Rentrak's experience in the ever growing VOD space to expand opportunities and evaluate audience strengths
Beyond the technology itself, a key additional benefit could be the expediting of certain advancements. Nielsen will have leverage to break through the red tape that has been holding back some of their proposed new products. And Rentrak may be able to fast track accreditation of their existing platform.
It remains to be seen whether there will be a true winner in the battle between Nielsen and the combined ComScore+Rentrak. We may get one leader that provides state of the art measurement, or two complimentary systems that provide advertisers with the ability to customize measurement and research services to their needs. Either way, it’s a step in the right direction, and a win for an industry eager to harness the power of data and technology to improve ROI.