U.S. Open Beats Super Bowl

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At least in brand impressions per hour. That's according to a new Nielsen study comparing the effectiveness of signage and other advertiser plugs in marquee televised sporting events.

Thanks to end-court signage at the tennis championship, which is visible during every serve and most other times as well, JP Morgan Chase registered 162 million average impressions per hour compared to the Super Bowl's top sponsor, Motorola's 157 million per hour.

The difference between JP Morgan Chase's end-court ads and its staduim sign was dramatic. The stadium sign racked up 7 million impressions over the entire broadcast, while the end-court signs drew 461 million, according to Nielsen.

Those figures are based on data Nielsen collects via its Sponsorship Scorecard service, which tracks signage, logos and other plugs in a widening field of sports telecasts.

Nielsen says it will allow companies for the first time to compare return on investment for various sports product placements.

To give advertisers a sense of the relative weight of their plugs, Nielsen calculates an impression according to a baseline viewing figure for a 30-second spot.

For example, say the audience is 100 million and a show gets an average 10 rating in the 25-54 demo. A 30-second spot will get a value of 10 million persons 25-54. An impression--they have to be at least one second and readable--gets a weighted fraction of that 30-second spot audience. A 15-second sign exposure, for example, would get half the value of the 30-second-spot, or 5 million viewers; a 3-second exposure would be credited with one tenth, or 1 million viewers.

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