Nielsen Partners With Unilever for Digital Measurement

Nielsen wants to disprove the old adage about advertising: “I know half of my advertising works, I just don’t know which half.” Now the measurement company is making a big push to show that it’s moved far beyond archaic “people meters” to measure ad engagement for the digital age.


Unilever is partnering with Nielsen for online advertising ratings in the US over the next year. The idea is to bring the TV advertising concept of “ratings points” along with reach and frequency to the web. Nielsen will give Unilever various measures for the impact of the campaigns its running for 40 different brands in the US.

The idea is to give Unilever—and then other advertisers—an idea of how people are interacting with their campaigns across all platforms. The technology uses so called “pixel tracking,” to see when an ad is shown in a browser and measures what the age and gender is of the people looking at the ad. Then Nielsen will combine that digital ad impact with the results from its TV ratings, to give a comprehensive ad rating for a brand, across all platforms.

With companies as diverse as TiVo, Google, and ComScore, giving detailed information about ads’ impact, Nielsen is under pressure to ramp up the detail of its measurements, both on TV and the slew of new digital platforms.

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