IAB and Nielsen launch mobile advertising audience measurement pilot

New mobile advertising measurment pilot aims to address industry demand for actual mobile audience data

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) Australia has struck a new partnership with Nielsen to launch a new mobile audience panel measurement pilot that it claims will address industry demand for better mobile audience metrics.

The program is being jointly funded and delivered by Nielsen and is supported by seven key publishers. The first top-line market data is expected to be available in the second quarter of 2014. According to the bureau, the pilot will deliver both site and application mobile usage data at a brand level to advertisers, as well as samples from Android and iOS smartphones and tablets using an electronic mobile meter.

The recent PwC Online Advertising Expenditure Report, showed mobile advertising now represents 11 per cent of the total online advertising market, and was worth $110.7m over the quarter. This was almost evenly split between smartphones (51.4 per cent) and tablets (48.6 per cent), and between search advertising (58.4 per cent) and general display and device (41.6 per cent). In the first quarter of this year, the IAB also found tablet-based advertising exceeded smartphone sales for the first time.

IAB Australia CEO, Alice Manners, said the panel was an important advancement towards bringing much-needed audience metrics to the industry.

“We see this as a first step on the path towards the development of a mobile measurement currency,” she said.

Nielsen was selected by IAB for the pilot following a vendor review earlier this year and because of its work on similar mobile panels in the US and Japan. The research company claims the pilot will be the first time Australian marketers will have actual, rather than claimed measurements, of audiences and demographics to mobile devices.

Device data for tagged sites is currently available in Nielsen’s Market Intelligence product. The research company has also announced it will invest in independent and representative traffic reporting of application usage on mobile and tablets in 2014.

“The way the industry has come together to run such a robust and forward thinking project is full credit to the foresight of the IAB,” Nielsen Media Group head, Monique Perry, said. “We feel a natural affinity to this.

“I firmly believe that this partnership, on one of the world’s most advanced media markets, is producing global best in class deliverables – and that’s great for publishers but it’s also great for advertisers.”

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According to Nielsen’s recent Online Ratings Establishment survey, 69 per cent of consumers more than 14 years of age have a smartphones, and 79 per cent of those accessed the Internet in the previous 24 hours. In addition, it found 6.61m Australians now own an iPad, and of these, 65 per cent are accessing the Web nearly every day.

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