All of the data available in Triton’s Media Rating Council (MRC) accredited national monthly rankers will now be available on a local market level, per an announcement yesterday by Triton Digital. Triton’s Webcast Metrics audience data will now be made available to subscribers on a local market by market basis. The updated solution will enable publishers to highlight their audience metrics within individual markets and combinations of markets as well as segment the audience across demographic attributes within geographies.
Unlike the top 20 ranker that Triton releases monthly, local data garnered through Webcast Metrics will not be released publicly. It will be the exclusive property of the subscribing publisher.
“We believe there is a substantial monetization opportunity for publishers within the local digital and mobile marketplace,” said Mike Agovino, COO of Triton Digital. “Local mobile advertising alone is expected to grow by more than $2 billion over the next several years, and this evolution of Webcast Metrics will further assist our customers in fully capitalizing on this market opportunity.”
This development has been in the making for a while – I know that Triton has been examining their local market reporting for a while with something like this in mind. And Pandora, the most listened to Internet radio station on Triton’s rankers, has been stepping up the demand for market by market ratings. In fact, a few months ago Pandora partnered with research firm Edison Research and began releasing hybrid local market ratings using Triton’s Webcast Metrics data and standard AQH formulas and comparing them to ratings and shares in Arbitron‘s local market broadcast reports.
Which caused a furor among broadcasters and their spokespeople who believe that broadcast radio should only be measured in a vacuum and never compared to other audio content sources like Internet radio or satellite radio. Of course, that’s silly — any ad supported audio content will ultimately have to measure up to any other to demonstrate performance and garner ad investments.
The fact that Triton will release local market audience data to subscribers is a great thing. In fact, I’m pretty sure it’s been available to them for a while, but the formal announcement and new product called Webcast Metrics Local ups the ante. Competition is good. It spurs development, keeps everyone on their toes, and is a sign of a thriving industry. Play on…
A new Webcast Metrics ranker of measured stations for March shows that Pandora‘s audience AAS sits slightly below the half million mark, a number that is just slightly above last month’s position. Last month, when Pandora’s number showed some negative growth, we learned that there was some missing data and that would affect March and April data as well: “During this period, the code that measures audience and time spent listening was inadvertently omitted by Pandora in some versions of their mobile applications. Therefore, not all of Pandora’s mobile listening is captured in this report.”
For the most part, the other leading groups or stations on the ranker showed increases: CBSRadio, Clear Channel, Citadel, Slacker, Entercom, ESPNRadio, Cox and Cumulus all saw modest growth in their AAS number while Digitally Imported, the third online only station in the top ten, saw a minute decrease in their domestic AAS.
AccuRadio, Salem and Bonneville continue to lead the pack with strong TSL numbers that are 3 or more times greater than Pandora and some of the other leading groups on the ranker. No doubt, this has to do with lots of sampling, but also to a loyal userbase for the three TSL winners on the ranker.
Triton Digital Media has acquired AndoMedia, the leader in online radio audience measurement and audio ad management. Triton Digital, part of the Triton Media Group, services over 4,500 affiliations for its various digital solutions, which include digital tools that stations use for audience engagement, including products for Streaming, Text Messaging, Loyalty, Music Discovery, Video, Content Management Systems, Music News Content and Local Search.
Triton’s been in acquisition mode for a while now, it’s been almost two years since they acquired Excelsior Networks, parent company to Dial Global Radio Networks. Since then they have announced many deals focused on expanding their digital foothold in the radio industry, including a purchase announced in August of loyalty marketing company Enticent.
To that end, the purchase of AndoMedia makes sense for Triton. It expands their offerings to stations to include audience measurement and ad management tools, and expands their client base from 4500 stations to the 6800 stations (broadcasters and online brands) that Ando is doing business with.
AndoMedia has announced some strong successes recently – last spring they watched Arbitron retreat from online audience measurement, and they gained online streaming giant Pandora and the Targetspot network as audience measurement clients, solidfying their place as the industry’s audience measurement platform. They recently purchased Spacial Audio, a company that provided similar ad replacement tools to online broadcasters, and recently began the process of MRC accreditation for Webcast Metrics. Ando Media’s Chief Executive Officer Bob Maccini said, “We’re excited to join the Triton family. The Triton and Ando resources, technology, leadership, track record and vision for the future promises significant value for our clients and media partners.”
Triton Media Group is backed by Oak Tree Capital. There’s no word on the price of this deal between two private companies.
Triton Digital has announced that they have inked an agreement to sell ReplaceAds Internet radio ad inventory. This adds more than a billion streaming audio and video impressions to Triton’s streaming network.
“The ReplaceAds™ Network further increases our digital sales footprint allowing us to provide a dramatically larger, more exclusive list of affiliates to our advertisers,” said Bill Freund, executive vice president of Triton Media Group. The ReplaceAds network has thousands of stations as affiliates, including both streaming broadcasters such as Sandusky Radio, Buckley Radio, Pamal Broadcasting, Main Line Broadcasting, Forever Broadcasting and Fox News Talk; as well as many large online brands like 977 Music, Radioio, Star104, and 1.FM.
The Triton Digital Network becomes much larger and more interesting with this move. Triton also has access to lots of streaming inventory through its relationship with the Dial Global Broadcast Network, which is owned by Triton. Freund says it’s still undetermined whether ReplaceAds will use AndoMedia’s Webcast Metrics to quantify the size of their audience. A few months ago, ReplaceAds announced that they had inked a deal to utilize Arbitron comScore for audience measurement, but since then that service has been halted. Since Targetspot and Katz Online – the other large online streaming networks – are now both being measured by Webcast Metrics, it would make sense for not just ReplaceAds, but all of Triton’s online network to be measured by the same service.
Triton becomes a major online audio network player with this move, competing with the above mentioned Targetspot and Katz Online. Each network can claim substantial coverage in terms of stations and impressions, but there’s crossover between all three as well. Targetspot and Katz Online share CBSRadio’s stations in their network, and Targetspot last week announced a list of new affiliates,some of whom are Katz clients as well – such as Saga and Bonneville. ReplaceAds and Katz Online share several stations: Sandusky, Fox News Talk, WOR and Radioio are a few. 977 Music is listed by all three networks.
This kind of crossover is practical from the station’s perspective, since they are working with multiple networks in an attempt to fully monetize their inventory. However, it could create confusion and concern about duplication in the marketplace, as well as put negative pressure on inventory as networks compete for sales. Online display ad networks saw cpms drop as the number of networks grew and exclusive relationships between sites and networks dropped. Google Audio’s entrance into the space in the next few months may complicate it further.
It may be time for networks to begin seeking more exclusive contracts with their affiliates than they have in the past to avoid those pitfalls. Stations should also carefully control inventory and pricing among multiple networks. This could be tricky – I’m not sure how many stations have systems in place to maximize rates and track inventory on their streams.