The road has been especially rocky between the radio industry and its primary ratings firm over the past several months. Wednesday’s announcement that Nielsen would increase PPM panel sizes may have filled in a few potholes. It’s no secret industry executives are quite upset to have Portable People Meters malfunction the way they did in November, especially with the amount of money radio doles out to Nielsen.
The radio industry has been asking for bigger sample sizes from Nielsen and Arbitron for years. On Wednesday, Nielsen came through with some good news. At no additional cost to clients, Nielsen says it will be increasing the effective sample size of its PPM panel by 10 percent across all markets and demographics, starting in 2017.
The Research Director’s Marc Greenspan tells Radio Ink this is a win-win for the radio industry and for Nielsen. “The most important thing that clients are paying Nielsen for is a sample that represents the population and allows broadcasters to make confident decisions based on the estimates that are produced by that sample. More sample is better and should reduce some of the bounce we see in the monthly ratings.”
The new panel will have more than 80,000 installed meters, meaning that on an average day more than 65,000 panelists will contribute to the ratings; Nielsen said that “represents more than 6,000 additional panelists on a daily basis across the aggregate of PPM markets.” The sample increase will be distributed proportionally across all demographics.
Nielsen Audio Managing Director Brad Kelly says, “An increase in the PPM sample size is the number one priority for our clients. With this investment, Nielsen is doubling down on its commitment to the radio industry and addressing the needs of our clients. We are thrilled to roll out this enhancement that will continue to build a stronger radio advertising marketplace.”