Can GRPs Help Build The Web Video Market?

In traditional television media, GRPs are the coin of the realm.  Gross Rating Points are the metric that agencies use to buy ads on the networks.  Now, Mindshare, a unit of WPP’s GroupM media arm, is embracing GRPs as a metric for web video.  Can this help speed the movement of dollars from traditional TV to web video?

Mindshare developed its translation of TV GRPs to apply to web video in association with the YuMe video ad network.  The idea is that Mindshare’s traditional TV clients like Unilever will start buying web video ad using the same standard they apply to broadcast and cable television.  With a common standard for TV and web, the thinking is that advertisers will increase their web video spending.

GRPs are a metric derived from the sum of the reach of a campaign times the frequency that the target audience was exposed to the ad.  Many agencies and advertisers are comfortable with this measure and are hesitant to move dollars to online video without the same standard metric.  TV has used the GRP standard for decades while web video has struggled with finding a common useful metric.   TV advertisers have not found “views” or “uniques” to be an acceptable replacement for the GRP.

Many have struggled to convert the GRP metric to web video.  But the small size of the web audence has frustrated agencies trying to make apples to apples comparisons.  The reach and frequency achieved in one TV boradcast can take weeks or months to acheive online.

But converting to a web audience, which is smaller and more splintered than TV, is difficult. A TV campaign, for example, would achieve a rating in one TV broadcast; online, the equivalent reach and frequency may be achieved over weeks or months.

Mindshare and YuMe are not the only players to develop and online GRP equivalent.  Tremor Media has started reporting their own GRP equivalent for online campaigns using comScore data.  BBE is working on an online GRP metric with Starcom Mediavest, the media arm of Publicis.

The hope is the GRP equivalent will help online video firms tap the $70 million devoted annually to traditional TV advertising in the US.

Mindshare’s Cary Tilds, Senior VP-Digital Strategy describes the need for an online GRP equivalent:  “As viewing online viewing continues to grow, we need to have a clear understanding with the partners we work with on how to evaluate frequency models on broadband vs. TV”.

YuMe President Jayant Kadami says,  “We can now start to say, that the same million dollars you spent for the TV buy, you can have to run it for a month on these sites and you will get the equivalent.”

Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.

Related Topics: Channel: Video | Video Search


About The Author: is the Chief Search Officer at Mediasmith in San Francisco, and co-author of Digital Engagement, published by The American Management Association. Bob coined the terms "Audience Development" for building traffic to websites and "Search Engine Optimization" (SEO).

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