Measurement firm Rentrak appears to be
gaining momentum in its push into the broadcast business, announcing
Wednesday that one of the largest station groups, Sinclair Broadcast
Group, will test Rentrak's new "StationView Essentials" system to
measure viewing of seven stations in four markets. Sinclair is one of
several large station groups who have expressed dissatisfaction with
local TV ratings provided by measurement giant Nielsen.
Sinclair stations participating in the
trial, which will use the Rentrak system to measure local station
performance via set-top-box data, are: WSYX (ABC) and WTTE (FOX) in
Columbus, Ohio; WCGV (MNT) and WVTV (CW) in Milwaukee, Wisc.; KABB
(FOX) and KMYS (MNT) in San Antonio, Tex.; and KDNL (ABC) in St. Louis,
Mo.. Rentrak says the agreement will include working with advertisers
and agencies to combine direct marketing tactics with set-top viewing
The agreement will begin on January 1,
2010 and includes a long-term expansion option for all of Sinclair's
markets. Outputs will include analytics of total television
consumption, and advertising buys based on engagement metrics derived
through the StationView Essentials service.
"When Rentrak approached Sinclair about
participating in this industry-leading trial we knew we had to
participate to accomplish two things: advance the state of measurement
and analytics for the television industry, and to have access to highly
detailed information with which to better manage our stations," said
Sinclair Television Group COO Steve Marks in a statement. "Rentrak's
ability to measure highly granular viewing patterns, capture
information and mold it into actionable knowledge made it an easy
decision to team up to be a part of the trial."
Earlier this month, Rentrak announced
Sunflower Broadcasting, which operates CBS affiliate KWCH in Wichita,
Kan, as the first customer for the StationView Essentials product.
The StationView system features second-by-second viewing data at the
station level, and allows station owners to view competitive data from
other stations in the market and monitor program performance leading
into ad breaks. Rentrak provides data from the top 100 markets based on
anonymous household viewing.
"Our partnership with Sinclair
Broadcasting allows Rentrak the opportunity to deliver on advertising
agency demands for more accountable media measurement," said Rentrak
SVP of business development Carol Hinnant in a statement. "Having the
support of one of the nation's largest and most renowned station groups
expands Rentrak's ability to prove the power of our newest offering
designed specifically for local station broadcasters."