With digital being heralded as the most measureable and targetable medium, there is a prevailing belief that every ad impression should be able to hit its target audience with precision and every ad should be viewable to the target consumer. In reality, however, that’s not the case.
Industry benchmarks can be used to help set delivery expectations and provide a powerful indicator of relative campaign performance.
In Europe, Comscore vCE Benchmarks revealed overall average in-target rates range from 52% in France to 41% in the UK. This means that across all campaigns in the normative data set, 52% of the impressions reached the intended target audience in France and 41% reached the intended target in the UK. In vCE, target audience is categorized based on the primary target selection, which is self-designated during campaign setup.
The most important cause of variation with in-target delivery is the composition of the target itself. The more targeting variables used, the harder it is to reach the target. It is also important to note that impressions that land outside of the target audience may also deliver value to the campaign by reaching and influencing other consumers. Thus, not all impressions that fall outside of the target should be viewed as wasted impressions.
Comscore vCE Benchmarks revealed in-view rates in Europe that ranged from 51% in Spain to 38% in the UK. This means that in most markets more than half of ad impressions did not deliver the opportunity to be seen.
In-view rates vary by placement type
It is not uncommon to see significant variance in viewability rates across campaigns, publishers and placement types, which is why it is important to evaluate viewability and to set delivery expectations with proper context in mind. As an example, a recent Comscore analysis found that premium sites tend to deliver higher viewability rates than non-premium sites, but significant variance exists even among these two groups. The wide viewability ranges suggest that regardless of the publisher type, there are some members of the sell-side market who are delivering very strong in-view rates and others who are falling short.
The rapid pace of change in the digital ecosystem over the past several years has been unprecedented – and it doesn’t seem to be slowing any time soon. The industry’s continued evolution means that media buyers and sellers must stay at the forefront of innovative thinking in order to maintain a competitive edge. Undoubtedly, sound measurement and research is critical to this process.
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