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Adobe and media tracking company Nielsen are teaming up to add a new set of audience ratings for online videos and other digital content, the companies announced today.

Nielsen is probably best recognized for TV show audience ratings, which help advertisers understand what kind of reach a particular program will have. This is pretty much the standard among TV networks, but with so many people now watching TV programming online, those ratings are missing out on a portion of the total viewing audience.

With today’s partnership, Nielsen will use Adobe Primetime to finally track viewer numbers and demographics for online video. Nielsen’s goal is to provide ratings that measure audiences accurately regardless of where or how they’re watching — be it from a desktop, mobile device, cable TV, or on-demand services. This is sort of the first step in getting a universal standard measurement for all video content.

The new Nielsen ratings are based on aggregated anonymous viewing data collected through Adobe Analytics, which will track and measure all digital content (online TV, videos, games, ads, audio, text). Brands and agencies using Adobe Marketing Cloud with then have access to both this data and the new Nielsen digital ratings, allowing them to make more informed decisions when spending their ad budgets.

A handful of big name media companies have already signed up to use Nielsen’s new ratings through Adobe, including ESPN, Turner, Sony Pictures (including online video service Crackle), Univision, and others. However, the ratings data won’t be available until 2015.


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