Audience measurement is undergoing a period of dynamic change, due to the rise of data and consumers' increasingly complex media diet - using multiple, multipurpose devices, sometimes simultaneously. It poses a number of challenges to audience measurement, and research bodies in many markets are working on new methodologies. As this evolution occurs it is important to approach audience measurement in a thorough, robust manner and be wary of potential pitfalls, such as fraud within digital media measurement.


Audience measurement quantifies the number of people in an audience for a piece of content or advertising. It includes measurement of radio listenership, TV viewing, newspaper and magazine readership, and traffic on websites. The term can also cover measurement of audience demographics, and time spent with the medium.

Key Insights

1. Consistency of metrics is key to better video audience measurement

Video audience measurement is challenging due to audience fragmentation, on-demand viewing behaviour and multiple platform and device usage. A study of video consumption by millennials and Generation X estimated that as much as two-thirds was not captured by traditional measures. In the push for better cross-platform video measurement, industry bodies are advocating several industry-standard metrics. The US Association of National Advertisers (ANA) and American Association of Advertising Agencies (4As) recommend Ad-ID, a digital identifying code, in conjunction with a new version of the video ad serving template (VAST 4.1). This will enable advertising assets to be correctly identified across all media platforms. The Media Rating Council (MRC) is – controversially – also looking at consistency in viewable impressions for video ads by weighting them according to duration.