Scott McDonald, president/CEO of the Advertising Research Foundation (ARF), understands the frustration of reinventing metrics in a marketing ecosystem that is in perpetual motion.

“We all sometimes fall into the trap of despair, of thinking that we are not making progress in the field of audience measurement,” he told delegates in the kick-off address at the organization’s 2018 AUDIENCExSCIENCE conference.

But because armies of research organizations have yet to land on a final, fixed cross-platform metric, he insisted, is not a reason for despair.

“If impatience leads to greater investment and sharper focus on solving problems, then I’m all for impatience,” he told delegates at the Jersey City, New Jersey, gathering. “But if it leads to despair and cynicism about being able to solve the problems of measurement, then it is lazy and self-defeating.”

And the ARF chief has little patience for laziness.