Media Moves

CNBC gives up on daytime Nielsen ratings

June 2, 2014

Posted by Chris Roush

Business news network CNBC is no longer planning to use Nielsen ratings for its daytime shows and will instead provide internal numbers to advertisers, reports Sam Thielman of Adweek.

Thielman writes, “But, of course, CNBC is also one of the few networks for which daytime ratings aren’t a particularly accurate measure of relevant reach. Monitors throughout the Goldman Sachs building play the network to their wealthy executives. The network’s show Squawk on the Street broadcasts from inside the New York Stock Exchange. If you work in the financial world—a small world, but one with nearly unlimited spending money—CNBC is ubiquitous in gyms, hotels and elsewhere among areas frequented by bankers and traders.

“This has always been the network’s contention when low ratings rear their heads—what does it matter if a representative sampling of 40-year-olds across the country have decided to marathon Breaking Bad this month? The network’s core viewership is and will continue to be Wall Street, and those are the people on the market for, say, a Lexus or a trip to Bali.

“So now, it seems that CNBC has decided to put its money where its mouth is and withdraw guarantees for the daytime, which is a crucial daypart for most people anxious to reach the network’s demographics. A source said the network has told advertisers that only half its clients asked for guarantees, anyway. That probably worked out very well for that half because if you’re getting your deliveries regardless of ratings and your price is pegged to ratings guarantees, you may have gotten make-goods this last year even though you were reaching your audience.

“Instead, said a source close to the network, the company is offering guarantees based on its own internal measurement of ad deliveries. It’s not an ideal situation, certainly—third-party measurement is a large part of what makes TV advertising so valuable—but parent company NBCUniversal has been revising its advertising sales apparatus radically in recent months.”

Read more here.

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