Nielsen to Track SVOD Viewer Data19 Nov, 2014 By: Erik Gruenwedel
Ratings giant to begin tracking Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video, among others, next month
Subscription streaming’s oft-heralded but largely unknown viewing audience is about to see the light of day for the first time. Data that could underscore SVOD’s impact on conventional network/pay-TV broadcasts, and shed light on the value of the billions in license fees Netflix, Amazon Prime and others shell out to content holders.
Nielsen reportedly is set to begin in December tracking audience data of original programing on Netflix, Amazon Prime Instant Video and Hulu Plus, among others, according to The Wall Street Journal, which cited internal client documents on the matter.
The tracking would encompass monitoring audio components of TV viewing in the home but wouldn’t monitor mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones. Nielsen is attempting remedy this loophole.
Since it began streaming video in 2008, Netflix, and later Amazon Prime Instant Video, have refused to provide viewership data for their original programing, citing a lack of advertisers to appease.
While Canadian tracking firm Sandvine has reported Netflix’s share of peak primetime broadband usage, actually determining the SVOD’s viewing totals for individual programing has largely been guesswork and speculation.
To date, Netflix had revealed that each subsequent original program has generated higher viewership tallies than the one preceding it. As a result, women’s prison dramedy “Orange Is the New Black” is considered Netflix most-watched original show.
“Our clients will be able to look at their programs and understand: Is putting content on Netflix impacting the viewership on linear and traditional VOD?” Brian Fuhrer, SVP of Nielsen, told The Journal.