Global marketing company Omnicom handles ad services for more than 5,000 clients in over 100 countries.  They are a big deal in ad circles.  So, when they talk, people do listen.  Here’s what they’re saying:

66% of TV and Video on content consumed by Millennials and Gen Xers is not being captured by current media measurement services. 

Hearts & Science study released by Omnicon

According to the study,  the group is spending an average of 30 hours per week consuming TV and video content; however traditional TV platforms account for only 10 of these hours.  The remaining 20 are divided between TV content viewed on other devices (such as in-app on mobile or via OTT devices) and streaming content viewed across all devices.

While traditional measurement firms like Nielsen, comScore, and Kantar do an adequate job estimating content and advertising audiences on traditional TV screens, there are big gaps in the data when it comes to measuring content and ad exposure in-app on mobile and tablet devices, on OTT devices like AppleTV and Roku; and via streaming services like Hulu and Netflix.

Barriers to cross platform measurement include slow adoption of Nielsen’s Digital Content Ratings Software Developer Kit (SDK) which requires integrating code to measure in-app content and ad consumption at the publisher’s expense –  on literally every platform, device and client app supported by that publisher. It’s complex and can get expensive.

Nielsen Digital TV Ratings do include streaming TV content via digital OTT devices, mobile apps, and browsers, the digital content and ad load must be identical to that of the original broadcast which is rarely the case since ad content is generally changed as content crosses environments to leverage viewer preferences.


According to the study, the issue of unmeasured platforms becomes even more critical when factoring in the 47% of MGXers who report zero hours consuming content on traditional TV platforms meaning that they exclusively consume TV and video via devices outside of the measurement coverage map.  Because today’s currency of TV measurement is not equipped to capture the whole story of this segment’s media consumption, the study authors have dubbed these viewers “Unreachables” –  reflecting the fact that existing planning tools are based on metrics that will guide buying away from reaching this audience.

“Mobile and streaming innovation bring about new creative opportunities, but they also create a complex problem that can be summed in a simple statement: if it can’t be measured, it can’t be properly targeted or planned against as part of a cohesive, cross-platform campaign.” – Scott Hagedorn, Hearts & Science (who did the study)