Nielsen to use Facebook, Twitter to measure peoples’ TV watching activities

By Staff Writer

Jan 22, 2016 05:35 AM EST

The media research firm Nielsen plans to revamp its methods for measuring people's TV watching activities, by utilizing Facebook and Twitter for their surveys. The company announced Wednesday this enhanced strategy called "Social Content Ranking."

According to a report from the New York Times, Nielsen is currently in talks with Facebook and Twitter to include the social media networks in their measuring program on how people watch TV in this present age. TV companies and advertising executives have criticized the media research company for failing to keep up with the fast changing digital atmosphere that has reshaped the TV industry. These TV companies claim that Nielsen doesn't accurately capture the TV habits of real audiences. One example is how it lacks measurements for Netflix.

MediaITE claims that Nielsen's plan to partner with social media networks to measure TV watching is long overdue. The media survey firm is the only real television rating service in the nation, with no other competition. However, it has been notoriously infamous for being unreliable. Its boxes placed on TVs in certain homes seem to be an outdated strategy to capture TV ratings, and it has been frowned upon by many TV executives.

Marketing Drive wrote that Nielsen Social President Sean Casey said, "The development of Social Content Rankings reflects Nielsen's commitment to continually adapt our services to meet the needs of the industry and is part of Nielsen's ongoing effort to evolve our measurement to reflect total audience across screens and platforms."

CBS Corporation chief research officer and CBS Vision president David Poltrack said Nielsen's new strategy to measure TV watching on multiple social network can give programmers a more holistic view and deeper insights on total social conversation on how people truly watch TV. The new Social Content Rankings is expected to roll out mid-year.

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