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NRS to shed new light on combined online/print audience with UKOM data

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The National Readership Survey (NRS) is set to begin its trial project fusing online audience data with NRS readership data, having today appointed UKOM/Nielsen to supply the online data.
For the first time, this could provide the planning, buying and selling communities with a continuous single-source database of print readership and its online equivalent.

UKOM, powered by Nielsen data, was selected to supply the online audience numbers for the fusion project, following presentations from comScore and UKOM/Nielsen. UKOM is the cross-industry organisation run by AOP and IAB, with oversight from ISBA and the IPA.

James Smythe, UKOM General Manager, says: "UKOM is pleased that the media industry has again chosen Nielsen's online audience data for a project of such strategic and financial importance. This decision underlines the primacy of credibility and quality in audience measurement. Advertisers expect their media investment plans to be backed up with reliable numbers; without this they will choose to spend their money elsewhere."

Explaining the appointment, Nielsen Commercial Director Ben Mein says: “This tie-up is welcome news for planners and publishers who want to know that elusive combined readership number across print and online. By appointing UKOM/Nielsen, NRS has given its members the very best foundation for achieving this goal by using the industry-approved and most robust online audience data available today.”

The results of the test should be available for assessment by NRS in early 2011. If successful, NRS and its stakeholders (IPA, NPA and PPA) will then decide if the fusion of online audience data onto NRS should become a permanent feature of the Survey.

Mike Ironside, chief executive of the NRS, says: “We’re pleased to announce that as part of our ongoing development programme for the Survey we will be conducting a six-month test to assess the audience’s size, and performance of the publishers’ online platforms alongside their print products.

“This test is an intrinsic part of transforming the NRS into a full communication survey, not just one focused on readership. For the first time, the advertising industry will be provided, on a continuous basis, with a trading and planning application, giving a single-screen solution to combine coverage and frequency for both print and online audiences.”

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