Adobe recently announced general availability of a new product, Adobe AudienceResearch. This announcement builds upon Adobe’s Audience Certification Program to provide content publishers with an independent certification of key SiteCatalyst metrics. This enables publishers to accurately represent their audiences in the ad selling process for ads whether those ads appear on sites, in digital magazine editions, or in mobile applications.
Before today, audience measurement services relied almost exclusively on panel-based measurement systems that use the behavior of a few people to estimate the behavior of the entire population. The result is that trying to guess how big your audience really is often feels like placing a bet at the horse track.
AudienceResearch was built to address these concerns and provides the following key benefits to Adobe Certified Publishers.
The Sample-method: The estimates of audience size are frequently much smaller than the actual size you see when you measure the whole population. Samples can be useful when all you need to do is compare the relative size of one site to another, but are not as useful when you need to know the actual size to forecast inventory and sell ads.
The Adobe Way: The better way is to simply measure each and every interaction from every individual on the site. Then you filter out the traffic you know is invalid based on known rules, and what’s left is your real, addressable audience.
The Sample-method: Accuracy questions aside, if your audience is below a certain size threshold, no estimate is available at all because the panel members simply don’t generate statistically significant levels of activity. In addition, sample-based methods are typically skewed towards US residents with less representation from other geographic areas. Lastly, behavior from, sample-based methods rely on installed software and struggle to pick up at work activity where the collection software is not installed.
The Adobe Way: With tried and tested solutions for measuring interactions on all kinds of sites and on every major platform, Adobe can collect census-based information no matter where your audience chooses to consume your content. And when you collect each and every interaction, there is no minimum threshold for audience size.
Adobe can tell you how many people are in your audience, no matter how many there are, no matter where they live, or no matter where they are.
The Sample-method: The actions of the few are used to predict the behavior of the many, and the actions of the few are quite varied. This means that an estimate of audience size has a confidence level that varies from property to property.
The Adobe Way: By having each Adobe Certified Publisher comply with some basic implementation standards, every interaction from every audience member is collected, processed, stored, and reported the same way. Every time.
The Sample-method: As we’ve talked to publishers, we frequently hear concerns about the “black-box” nature of how panel data is turned into audience estimates. It’s hard to have confidence in a number without an understanding of how that number was derived.
The Adobe Way: Earlier this year, Adobe achieved accreditation with the Media Rating Council (MRC). This means that every year an independent auditing firm comes in to examine everything involved in the collection, processing, storage, and reporting of Certified Audience Data to ensure validity, reliability, and effectiveness. Audits are conducted in accordance with standards from the MRC and the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB).
Adobe’s verified compliance with industry standards means that everyone can get comfortable with the processes and procedures that Adobe uses to produce the Certified Metrics. There is no guesswork about where the numbers came from, because a new report in SiteCatalyst will account for every audience interaction page by page and tell you which ones were valid and which ones were not. If they are not valid, we’ll tell you why.
At Adobe, we also understand that your data belongs to you, and for that reason, use of AudienceResearch is entirely opt-in for customers.
The Sample-method: In order to reach statistical significance, panel-based methods combine data for an entire month before releasing their data. This results in audience data not being available until half-way into the next month.
The Adobe Way: Adobe has always operated in real-time. Cleansing and validation of Adobe Certified Audiences is done in real time and is available within SiteCatalyst in moments.Metrics in AudienceResearch are updated once daily when the day’s processing is complete, so that you can get the data you need when you need it.