Frankfurt, 29/09/2023. At the AGF Forum 2023, held on Wednesday under the theme 'Mind the Gap - AI, Data, and Total Reach' at the Frankfurt Union Halle, Kerstin Niederauer-Kopf, CEO of AGF Videoforschung, welcomed more than 240 attendees - significantly more than the previous year. The event was hosted by freelance journalist and author Juliane Paperlein. The day's agenda primarily revolved around the challenges of an increasingly converging media market and the dynamic changes that come with it, in line with the theme. In addition to content providers and advertisers, audience measurement research also faces ever-evolving challenges in achieving a common standard as its ultimate goal.
In this context, Kerstin Niederauer-Kopf could announce that the developments scheduled for June 2023 for the cross-media test project AGF X-REACH were delivered precisely as promised. Since the middle of the year, AGF X-REACH has been in regular data production for the offerings under AGF measurement. With AGF X-REACH, for the first time, comprehensive comparisons "in one piece" for TV, streaming, and display are possible, including the identification of overlaps, increments, exclusive contacts, and total reach.
In a deep dive, using N-TV as an example, it was impressively demonstrated that, in addition to the holistic cross-media perspective, including TV, the examination of the purely digital offering provides many exciting insights that were not previously available to the market in this form. For instance, user data, or net contacts per month, can now be presented on a daily basis. Additionally, the distribution of usage across devices can be analyzed. Net reach, which refers to individuals who had at least one interaction with the content during the observation period, serves as the foundation for bridging the gap between different media. "This comparability on a target audience basis with a consistent contact definition across all devices is a valuable asset when considering the significant decisions that need to be made daily by content providers and advertisers based on data. It's important to have a clear understanding of how deeply the target audience is penetrated in each distribution channel," explained Niederauer-Kopf. She also noted that while she equated the metric 'net reach' with the well-known 'unique user' in terms of definition, the methodological approach differs due to the hybrid measurement approach.
Kerstin Niederauer-Kopf also underscores the importance of standards, as exemplified by AGF X-REACH: "The development of the AGF X-REACH project impressively demonstrates that standards fundamentally minimize misjudgments or risks and, furthermore, can promote or even accelerate innovations." The fact that this project status can already be presented after an 18-month development period is due, on the one hand, to the strong commitment of all project stakeholders and, on the other hand, to the ability to leverage and expand upon the existing hybrid methodological and measurement foundation of AGF.
Currently, four providers are participating in the measurement, offering more than seventy services and over 100 implementations in browsers and apps, all integrated into the established Nielsen SDK measurement. "This is an extraordinary achievement by the providers in terms of speed, which also demonstrates the publishers' willingness to meet the enduring demands of the advertising market and comprehensively measure the performance of their offerings in a cross-media manner," stated Niederauer-Kopf. Consequently, the technical prerequisites are in place to integrate additional providers or platforms within a standardized measurement framework. Moreover, the ability to use panels in the hybrid measurement approach to derive personally identifiable information for modeling, while maintaining the accustomed quality, proves to be a solid foundation for future developments, especially in light of the technological challenges expected in the coming year. The fact that high-quality panels are considered a source of truth is also evident in international comparisons.
Dr. Martin Andree,a lecturer in Digital Media at the University of Cologne and the founder of AMP Digital Ventures, took aim at the digital industry in his keynote address titled "Quo Vadis, Free Media?" He identifies a threat to the open internet due to the dominance of a few major players and suggests potential ways to break free from this dependence.
In the subsequent talk with moderator Juliane Paperlein, Haruka Gruber, Senior Vice President of Media at DAZN, explained that he considers it essential for DAZN's positioning in the advertising market to have the offerings of the streaming platform measured by AGF. Andrea Geißlitz, Director of the Insights Division at Kantar, confirmed that streaming has now become a staple in all target demographics in her presentation titled "Trends in the Use of Video Content on the Big Screen." According to the results from the Platform Study 2023 I, it remains uncontested at the top spot for the consumption of video content from TV mediatheques and streaming platforms.
Andrea Schombara, Director of Methodology & Conventions at AGF, and Martin Landgraf, Director of Data & Technology, presented the status of the motion picture standard, which will become the default in AGF's evaluation systems from 2024 onwards. They also highlighted the changes expected in the reception levels, among other aspects.
Andreas Gerhardt, Chief Distribution Officer at Sport 1, and Siméon Mirzayantz, Regional Business Manager for CEEMEA & Southern Europe at Glance - Médiamétrie, discussed with Juliane Paperlein the "Impact of Distribution Strategies and Paywalls on Audience Reach" in Germany and internationally. The cross-border perspective was also evident in Caroline Servy's keynote presentation titled "An Overview of Non-Scripted and Scripted Trends Across the World," which featured examples of successful formats from around the globe, some of which will soon be airing in Germany as well.
In the panel discussion titled "The Battle for the Big Screen," Ute Biernat, CEO of UFA Show & Factual, Dr. Florian Kumb, Head of Program Planning at ZDF, and Malte Hildebrandt, Managing Director of Screenforce, unanimously agreed that both production companies and broadcasters face challenges. They are challenged by changing viewing habits, especially among younger audiences, and the increasing use of video on the small screen. However, the key success factors remain the ability to adapt content and technology to new realities and the strong appeal of the big screen.
The topic of "Data Silos - Future or Past" reflected views from the perspective of clients, agencies, broadcasters, and AGF. Juliane Paperlein engaged in discussions with Kerstin Niederauer-Kopf, Thorsten Müller, Director of Data Driven Marketing & Media DACH/NORDICS at Reckitt Benckiser, Klaus-Peter Schulz, Managing Director of the Organization of Media Agencies, Kai Ladwig, CMO of Visoon Video Impact, and Manfred Kluge, Chairman DACH of the Omnicom Media Group. Both clients and broadcasters, as well as agencies, openly admitted to using their own systems for data collection and modeling, especially in the absence of a cross-media standard. Nevertheless, they unanimously advocated for unified standards that should provide guidance, efficiency, and trust in the digital world.
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