via press release:

TNS Media Research President Calls For Change In Traditional

Definition of Television Audience Measurement

Shababb, Speaking at ARF’s Audience Measurement 4.0 Conference, Says Expansion of Definition, Beyond Just Ratings, is Needed to Help Industry Integrate Insights and Understanding Made Possible Through Technology

New York, NY, June 24th The traditional ratings system definition of television audience measurement, based upon reach and delivery, is insufficient for current industry needs and should evolve to incorporate the granular insight now being made possible by advanced analytics and technology, says George Shababb, president of TNS Media Research.

Speaking at the Advertising Research Foundation’s Audience Measurement 4.0 conference in New York, Shababb said that the current method of assessing television audience behavior – the ratings system – needs to be supplemented to take into account analytics that can define not only audience size but viewers themselves and their habits – data now available through Return Path Data from set-top cable boxes.

Participating on a panel, “Video Measurement – Overcoming Complexity,” as part of the ARF conference, Shababb said, “The ratings system sufficed as a measure of the television audience when the only real data available was metrics on size and reach, but technology has evolved to enable measurement of the entire spectrum of live and time-shifted (DVR) audience viewing behaviors at a second-by-second level with granular insight into audience behavior such as commercial avoidance, creative wear-out level and audience flow.  How we define audience measurement should evolve accordingly to reflect the metrics now available to us.”

Shababb says the drive to emulate the granular insight associated with digital media has changed expectations and needs relative to television audience measurement.  He says that as the goal is to eventually enable integration of measurement across both online and offline media, it is inconsistent to continue to define television audience measurement solely within the context of reach and delivery when audience measurement of digital media, such as that provided by TNS Compete, can provide much greater insight and understanding into behavior.

As an example of the advanced analytics now available through RPD, TNS Media Research presented two research briefs at ARF’s Audience Measurement 4.0 conference.

Commercial Tuneaway as a Function of Message Frequency: What Can We Learn About Wearout From The Set-Top Box?” found that attention to an advertisement decreased with frequency of exposure and that viewer advertising “tuneaway” increased as a result.

Understanding Television Viewing Among Multi-Cultural Consumers” looked to outline an effective method of analyzing set-top box data in order to identify behavioral patterns that align with multi-cultural diversity. The research found that to gain a true understanding of television audience behavior requires an amalgam of data, based on large samples, from across markets and cultures.

The research briefs utilized Return Path Data from Charter Los Angeles that measured second-by-second tuning of over 420,000 sets in approximately 270,000 homes.

About The TNS Media Group

Established in more than 30 countries, the TNS Media Group explores all media – print, radio, TV, Internet, social media, cinema and outdoor worldwide, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and offers a full range of insights, analyses and audience measurement services through its business units, TNS Media Research, TNS Media Intelligence, TNS Compete and TNS Cymfony.

TNS Media combines the deepest expertise in the industry to provide media and marketing intelligence including advertising expenditure monitoring, advertising creation monitoring, audience measurement, market influence analytics, online consumer behavior tracking, news monitoring, sports sponsorship evaluation and more.  The TNS Media companies track more than 3 million brands and provide vital market intelligence to 16,000 customers around the world. For further information, please visit

About Kantar Group and TNS Media

TNS Media is a part of The Kantar Group, one of the world’s largest research, insight and consultancy networks. By uniting the diverse talents of more than 20 specialist companies, the group aims to become the pre-eminent provider of compelling and actionable insights for the global business community. Its 26,500 employees work across 80 countries and across the whole spectrum of research and consultancy disciplines, enabling the group to offer clients business insights at each and every point of the consumer cycle. The group’s services are employed by over half of the Fortune Top 500 companies. For further information, please visit

Posted by:TV By The Numbers

blog comments powered by Disqus