Exploring New Digital Currencies for TV, Cable, and Internet Audiences: Digital Cable and STB Data Initiative
Since its purchase of Hooperatings in the 1950s and Arbitron’s exit of the local TV ratings ﬁeld in the 1980s, the Nielsen Company had maintained its status of being the dominant player in the CPM/Currency market for national and local television, which it considered its core business. However, at the same time, the company realized that it needed to consider new business models in a digital era. Nielsen was aware that many in the industry did not see it as receptive to newer models or new ways of conducting business. Its older methods, based on samples of audiences who reported viewing by meters or paper-and-pencil diaries, were beginning to seem quaint. Advertisers and agencies were beginning to look past traditional survey-based methods of TV audience measurement to see whether census-based rather than sample-based data of TV tuning behavior might not be a better way of determining TV’s advertising effectiveness, now that the digital transition had made this type of data available through a new device, known as digital set-top boxes (STBs).