Sony Computer Entertainment America and research/TV ratings firm The Nielsen Company have announced a new partnership to develop a game network ad measurement system which the two say "will help make game software a more competitive advertising platform."
Under the terms of the agreement, SCEA will give Nielsen data such as game network traffic from its PlayStation Network and other products such as its forthcoming Home, as well as usage statistics on first- and third-party software titles.
Nielsen will analyze and benchmark the data, creating new measurements for calculating the reach, frequency and effectiveness of game network advertising, which it says will benefit the entire industry.
The SCEA data will be combined with the company's own game usage data collected from 12,000 homes for its current National People Meter panel. The results will become part of a syndicated GamePlay Metrics measurement product expected to launch in July 2007, followed by monthly reporting and ranking of audience statistics and user activity on the PlayStation Network this fall.
Nielsen says it is also working with SCEA on identifying server data and determining media data formats that it says will enhance the company's abilities to deliver "the right ad to the right person at the right time across PlayStation Network," and give advertisers and agencies greater CPM accuracy and detail.
Nielsen says it intends the new "fully-transparent and highly-accurate measurement system" to "mitigate the risk to the advertiser and lead to the growth of the industry."
Said Nielsen Games vice president Jeff Herrmann, "SCEA's contribution of its game census data, combined with Nielsen's data sets, represents a milestone in our efforts to bring greater legitimacy and accuracy to game advertising measurement. By marrying SCEA's server-side data traffic with our standard ratings metrics, we will be able to provide advertisers with a much more robust picture of the impact of their game network advertising and of those consumers who are actually playing games, all while preserving consumer privacy."