Engagement Ratings, Good For All Media?

Beyond traditional demographic and ratings data lies the
question of engagement. How valuable would the data be that illustrates how
closely people connect with a particular media? Wouldn’t it give advertisers a
better sense of whether or not ads are working and if they’re matched with the
right audience?

Last year, Nielsen bought IAG, which has researched
television-program and ad recall since 2004, finding that the more viewers can
recall and say what they liked, the higher their engagement rating.

Based on the numbers, Ford had little reason to advertise
during The Discovery Channel series Dirty
starring Mike Rowe, because the show delivered minuscule Nielsen
ratings. However, the engagement metrics showed that viewers turned out to be
truck-buying men, aged 18 – 49. Though the show didn’t have very many viewers,
the ones it did have were highly engaged and therefore more open to listening
to the Ford message.

Now Ford advertises on the show and has hired Rowe to appear
in Ford F-series pickup Web videos.

This information is very useful, not only for above-the-line
media like TV, but also for its ability to translate into strong engagement for
below-the-line media as well. Ford has used this engagement metric to leverage
a strong connection with the show and consumers across the complete media

To further capitalize on their partnership with Rowe,
dealers are using the commercials, Web videos, print and point-of-purchase
advertisements as on-site sales tools to further highlight the trucks, “Built
Ford Tough” product promise.

addition, the commercials are tagged with a plea for consumers to head to their
local dealer to check out the latest deals. To increase dealership traffic, Mike Rowe appearances and/or
promotions (test rides with Mike, your “dirtiest” Ford truck photo contest)
were executed to draw crowds and likely boost sales.

This integrated marketing campaign was born from IAG’s
engagement metrics and effectively drove consumers all they way down the
purchase funnel, bringing potential buyers to retail (in this case a dealer).

Simply designing and placing advertising that is based
solely on traditional demographic ratings may not be enough. The Ford/Dirty Jobs case study is a great
illustration of designing an engaging advertising platform from the top down,
but is there a way to design it from the bottom up, and what would that look
like for nontraditional ad agencies?

Are we doing enough to effectively measure ad recall in the
shopping environment, which is cluttered and has even more distractions? What
does engagement mean in the in-store environment, and how can we more
effectively measure it?

Link for complete Business Week article “Paying for
Viewers Who Pay Attention”

– Contributed by Darcy Barnes