Every April, the NAB (National Association of Broadcasters) conference in Las Vegas celebrates the convergence of media, entertainment and technology. This year, Nielsen took center stage across a variety of business verticals. And with leaders from the media, entertainment, finance and advertising communities, this year’s show proved the perfect opportunity to announce new technology for measuring media, as well as share our insights on the media technologies of the future.
Unveiling New PPM Wearables
In front of a packed audience, Bill Rose, SVP of Nielsen Audio Client Solutions, presented “Radio Engage: Sorting Through the Clutter: Cross Media Planning and Putting Radio on a Level Playing Field.” Bill shared how to sort through the clutter and communicate the value of radio within the media mix in the midst of increasing fragmentation.
As part of the presentation, Bill also unveiled the latest designs for our wearable Portable People Meter (PPM) technology (pictured above). The updated design of the PPM wearables will make participation easier for our panelists and, as a result, improve representation. Our ultimate vision is to bridge our audio and other panels to boost value and gain cross-media insights.
In addition to being easier to use, the new wearable PPM will feature a companion app that will enable data collection out of home—improving compliance while allowing for new ways to interact with panelists. Bill also noted that Nielsen has held multiple focus groups on the wearables and that the feedback has been extremely positive and insightful. The wearable design, prototypes, and initial lab and friends and family testing has now been completed. The next step in the development process is testing with former panelists, which will begin later this year.
Bill’s talk highlighted other big measurement developments for the radio industry, including Nielsen Media Impact (NMI) which is Nielsen’s Total Audience Planning Solution. Bill provided examples of how clients can use NMI to demonstrate what happens when radio is included in the media plan. In addition, his presentation reviewed the benefits of Continuous Diary Measurement, which brings monthly reporting to Nielsen’s Diary markets starting in 46 metros this summer. Continuous Diary Measurement will provide clients with fresher data that can enable better decisions.
Engineering Watermark Technology Innovations
During the week-long event, the NAB also joined with us in announcing the successful transmission of a Nielsen audience measurement watermark using the new ATSC 3.0 broadcast transmission standard. The transmission is part of an ongoing collaboration preparing broadcasters and manufacturers for the transition to the “Next Gen TV” standard.
Exploring the Technology Driving the Future of Media
Gracenote and SuperData, both Nielsen companies, were also active at this year’s NAB Show. Throughout the event, executives lent subject matter expertise to panel discussions focusing on timely topics, including next generation car radio, voice-driven video experiences, as well as video gaming and esports.
On the In-Vehicle Experience stage on the show floor, Gracenote’s VP of Product for Music, Tom Rettig , sat alongside Jim Buczkowski, Henry Ford Technical Fellow & Director for Ford, John Vermeer, SVP, Business Development and Partnerships at iHeartMedia and Paul McLane, Editor of Radio World for a discussion on “Creating a Seamless Entertainment UX in the Connected Car.” The expert panelists discussed the various audio sources available to consumers in the connected car and the features designed to help drivers navigate those sources intuitively and safely. Given the importance of broadcast media to NAB, they also dove into efforts to leverage the popularity of radio by putting it front and center in connected car infotainment systems.
Gracenote’s Chief Product Officer, Simon Adams, took to the AI & Cloud Campus stage to participate on the “Voice Control and AI: Pushing the TV Experience Forward” panel. Joining him for a discussion on the role of voice-driven content search and navigation were heavy-hitters Amit Bagga, VP, Research & Development at Comcast, Peter Gugliemino, CTO for IBM and Colin Dixon, Chief Analyst at nScreenMedia. While Amit provided insight into consumer usage of voice features on Comcast’s popular X1 remote control, Peter covered off on how IBM leverages advanced AI to “liberate” data around content. Simon tied everything together speaking to how deep descriptive entertainment metadata makes voice search work across increasingly complicated use cases such as conversational queries.
Lastly, Joost van Dreunen, Co-Founder of SuperData lined up with Colan Neese, Senior Manager, Audience Insights at Twitch and Allison Dollar, CEO of the ITV Alliance for the “Level-Up: How Video Gaming is Driving the Future of TV” panel. Sitting in plush gaming chairs on the ESports Experience stage, the speakers engaged in rapid-fire conversation on the key attributes of video gamers and the “mainstreaming” of their behaviors and preferences. The discussion drilled down on facts and figures around live streaming, esports and gaming video content, as well as key takeaways for broadcasters who are increasingly interested in reaching viewers obsessed with these emerging entertainment types.