Ratings giant Nielsen is responding to programmers' call for better audience measurement by consolidating various initiatives involving data from digital set-top boxes into a new service called Nielsen DigitalPlus.
Nielsen DigitalPlus will take set-top box data from cable operators and satellite providers and integrate it with other Nielsen information and resources,including the television measurement services of Nielsen Media
Research, commercial activity data from Nielsen Monitor Plus, retail and scanning information from A.C. Nielsen, and modeling and forecasting data from Claritas, Spectra and BASES.
It follows previous efforts by Nielsen in the digital space, such as helping to track video-on-demand viewing for Comcast and measuring digital-video-recorder usage in conjunction with TiVo.
Initially, Nielsen DigitalPlus will focus on several high-potential client initiatives, including exploring how set-top box data can be factored into Nielsen's Anytime Anywhere Media Measurement (A2/M2) system for
electronic measurement of local television markets; providing measurement of advanced advertising applications such as interactive, targeted advertising; and providing analytics to support cable operators' customer relationship management (CRM) programs by combining television viewing data with other
data sets on subscribers' viewing habits.
"With our wide array of media and marketing information services, expertise in advanced technology, and experience working with large volumes of data, Nielsen is uniquely positioned to help clients unlock the potential of set-top box data," said Jed Meyer, senior VP of Nielsen DigitalPlus, in a statement. "As the industry begins to analyze and use the vast amount of information available through these devices, Nielsen will work with clients to develop comprehensive solutions to this new frontier of measurement. We are intensely focused on using all our resources to succeed at this challenge."