Google revamps audience measuring analytics

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Google's Neal Mohan
Google's Neal Mohan

Google introduced the Brand Activate Initiative, designed to promote an alternative way of measuring the audience for online media by implementing metrics similar to those used in television, said Neal Mohan, Google's VP of display advertising, at Ad Age Digital Conference in New York.

“Until now, the ubiquitous measures across the internet were impressions, clicks and conversions, which are useful, but brands care about audiences, reach and frequency, and they care about the exposure of their creative [work],” Mohan said.

As part of the Brand Activate Initiative, Google debuted two solutions: Active View and Active GRP.

Active View measures ads in terms of "viewed" impressions, defined by the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) as an ad that is 50% visible for at least one second. Active View takes into account whether an ad was delivered, the extent to which it was viewed, and the duration for which it was viewed.

“The key is to make [data] truly actionable—not just give reporting—but give brands the ability to look at campaigns based on viewable impressions as opposed to raw impressions,” Mohan said.

The second product, Active GRP, is a metric designed to complement traditional advertising measurements by analyzing correlations between online video viewership, television viewership, and subsequent consumer activity.

“In order for us to extend brand marketing effectively from TV to online, it's important to have a metric that also translates across the two mediums,” said Sanaz Ahari, senior product manager at Google, in a video about the new initiative. “Active GRP is that metric for online.”

In Google's recent quarterly call, Nikesh Arora, Google's SVP and chief business officer, discussed how enterprise customers want metrics that extend across multiple screens, including desktops, laptops, mobile handsets, tablets and ultimately televisions.

Other content-hosting providers have also revamped metrics and pricing models around online video viewership. Earlier this week, AOL launched a product that guarantees delivery for online video marketing campaigns.

At the same conference, Hulu announced it would charge advertisers only when a video stream is fully delivered.

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