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Rentrak Corporation Message Board

  • dutchdaulton2000 dutchdaulton2000 Jul 20, 2005 3:53 PM Flag

    Cable's Big Bet On Hyper-Targeting

    Did anybody read this? See this?? Comments??? My only comment is they ALWAYS say Nielson when they talk about ratings which is fine, but never mention RENT as a independent source(for monitoring)...

    Cable's Big Bet On Hyper-Targeting
    Time Warner will test new software that sends different ads to different viewers

    Imagine the scene. You're relaxing at home, engrossed in the flickering images on your big-screen TV. Ahhh, nothing like really great programming. Except in this case, it's not a show that's got your attention; it's a 30-second commercial. Preposterous? Cable operators hope not. With their small, hard-to-measure audiences, cable companies and channels haven't commanded anywhere near the ad revenue of the networks. Now they're starting to fight back. Time Warner Cable Inc. (TWX ) will soon begin testing a system designed by software firm Invidi Technologies Inc. that uses the digital set-top cable box to track what each TV in any house has on. It's expected to go into a household test by yearend, with other cable companies following in 2006. By analyzing where a viewer channel surfs, Invidi says the system can figure out the age, gender, and probable interests of the viewer. Most important, the system then matches TV ads to the consumer based on what might actually interest them.

    That's a long way from merely trying to match ads to TV programs that seem likely to attract consumers an advertiser desires. If a 50-year-old father and his 14-year-old daughter each tuned into a Seinfeld rerun on different TV sets, for example, Invidi's system would send each a different ad during the same commercial break. The father might see a pitch for after-shave lotion while his daughter would see one for acne medicine. If this experiment in hyper-targeting works, it could spread fast. As the share of cable TV households with digital set-top boxes rather than analog boxes rises from 38% at the end of 2004 to nearly 100% by 2007 as part of federal law to make all TV digital, operators such as Time Warner and Comcast Corp. (CMCSA ) hopes to make consumer sharp-shooting commonplace.

    Advertisers have long been looking for a better way to measure and track TV viewing than the ratings from Nielsen Media Research that are used to set ad rates. The payoff could be big for cable operators. They get only about 30% of TV ad revenues despite having 48% of prime-time viewers because so many cable channels have minuscule viewerships, making it hard to set ad rates. If Invidi works, viewers might actually watch more commercials rather than zipping past them. That's something advertisers would likely pay a premium for. "Not wasting consumers' time is the new currency," says Invidi CEO David Downey.

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    • It is obvious that we get no respect in this area. Remember, it is still fair to say that Nielson is the only player�so far. In this one area, Rent is not yet providing market data to the masses, Neilson is.

      Good posts. I do believe that Rent will get there. Even Warner will somehow need to convince the �buyers� that the data will be independent. As it stands now, that will be somewhat problematic. Rent is a third party independent. So is Nielson, but their reliability has been questioned for some time.

      The one thing I could never find out is why does much theatrical data come from someone other than Rent? I believe the source is Rent, but the data is provided to the studios and they upstream it�

      Otherwise, good posts. What is the source of this article?


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