Red Herring: SpotXchange Gets comScore Metrics

Red Herring, 16 August 2007, 15:51, by Tomio Geron

[This article originally appeared on August 6, 2007.]

Internet video advertising exchange SpotXchange will on Tuesday team up with online measurement firm comScore to help assure big name advertisers that their ads reach the appropriate consumers and make the right impact.

Under terms of the partnership, comScore will independently verify the demographic profiles of viewers who see ads sold through SpotXchange’s online ad marketplace.

“For (advertisers) who have a well known brand name, I think it’s important for media buyers to go back to clients and say, ‘this information has been verified from a targeting perspective,’ and they can be very confident that it’s legitimate,” said Michael Shehan, CEO SpotXchange.

The partnership is the latest attempt by Internet companies and ad agencies to make the Web friendlier to big brand advertisers that have typically relied on television and print publications to reach customers. Westminster, Colorado-based SpotXchange, a division of digital marketing firm Booyah Networks, allows advertisers and publishers to buy and sell video in a real-time auction format. Its technology also lets advertisers to target specific geographies, genders, ages, or incomes.

With the amount of uncertainty that still exists among advertisers about online video, third-party verification is a plus for SpotXchange, said Andrew Frank, advertising analyst at Gartner. “I think there’s a definite need [among] advertisers for more confidence through metrics and more granularity in being able to see what’s really going on for some of these videos,” said Mr. Frank.

comScore, known for measuring Internet traffic and ranking the most popular Websites, will track many people watch a particular ad and for how long they watch it. The company will also measure an ad’s gross rating point, a metric used in television advertising that describes the percentage of a targeted audience that was reached over a particular period of time.

A number of companies have moved into the area of online advertising exchanges, including Yahoo’s Right Media, DoubleClick which announced plans to be acquired by Google, and AdECN, which recently announced plans to be acquired by Microsoft. These companies specialize in the buying and selling of remnant ad inventory, but have not yet focused specifically on video inventory in the way that SpotXchange has.

SpotXchange currently focuses on professional or semi-professional content and it is targeting major brand advertisers as well. The company also said it was not ruling out adding smaller advertisers or user generated content to its marketplace in the future.

TubeMogul and Vidmeter also provide online video metrics.

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