MRC unveils measurement standards for digital out-of-home advertising

Dive Brief:

  • The Digital Place Based Advertising Association (DPAA) has announced the release of Media Rating Council (MRC) measurement standards for place-based audiences. The standards will impact out-of-home digital advertisements and provide media planners with syndicated and audited audience data.
  • The new standards are part one of a two-phase initiative, with part two set to encompass broader aspects of digital and analog out-of-home media. The ultimate goal of the initiative is to create a common core of metrics and practices for out-of-home ads, with measurables that will be comparable to other measured media.
  • "These standards are the result of an extremely thorough process that included all key players — measurement services, media buyers and sellers," Scott Marden, CMO at Captivate and chair of the DPAA's Research and Standards Committee, said in a statement. "The result is a standards document that will help our industry further accelerate our already rapidly growing ad revenue. It is a final step in ensuring digital place-based advertising's seat at the table with all measured media." 

Dive Insight:

Digital out-of-home is turning once static and staid advertising channels like billboards and in-store promotions into marketing opportunities with connected mobile tactics like location-based targeting and in-store beacons. However, as the space has grown, marketers have had few tools to properly measure their efforts — an issue the MRC and DPAA now seek to remedy. 

"This is a significant milestone in the evolution of our industry," Barry Frey, president and CEO of DPAA, said in a statement. "These standards open the door for us to provide syndicated, audited audience data to media planners, which in turn will put us in a stronger position to garner our rightful share of advertising budgets."  

Standardization of marketing metrics remains top of mind following the recent industry call to action from Procter & Gamble's Chief Brand Officer Marc Pritchard. P&G is the world's largest advertiser by spend and is now suggesting that it will move its business elsewhere if ad partners do not receive MRC accreditation. 

While Pritchard was harping on the messy state of the digital supply chain and wonky metrics like viewability as opposed to place-based advertising, the latest developments from the MRC should still be welcome for brands.  

Tying together digital and physical efforts has long proved a challenge for marketers. The CMO Council released a study on omnichannel alignment in December that found 49% of marketing professionals said bridging digital and physical customer experiences is "selective at best."

Filed Under: Trends Analytics
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