Arbitron and Comscore Media Metrix Introduce New Online Radio Ratings Service
America Online’s AOL® Radio Network; Yahoo!®’s LAUNCHcast; and Microsoft’s MSN Radio and Windowsmedia.com Are Charter Subscribers
NEW YORK, November 29, 2004 – Arbitron Inc. (NYSE:ARB) and Comscore Media Metrix, a division of Comscore Networks, Inc., announced today the debut of a new service designed to provide traditional broadcast ratings for the online radio industry.
America Online’s AOL Radio Network; Yahoo!’s LAUNCHcast; and Microsoft’s MSN Radio and Windowsmedia.com have signed on as charter subscribers for the new service.
The new measurement service, which is named Comscore Arbitron Online Radio Ratings, is the result of collaboration between Arbitron and Comscore Media Metrix, the respective leaders in radio and online audience measurement. The data will be released monthly and the first estimates from the service will be released next week.
The Comscore Arbitron Online Radio Ratings service is based on a subset of approximately 200,000 U.S. participants within the Comscore global consumer panel. Using proprietary and patent-pending technology, Comscore passively and continuously captures the online behavior of these panelists, including online radio listening behavior. The service will provide customers with Average Quarter Hour and Cume audience estimates for traditional broadcast dayparts and demographics. This allows online radio to be planned and bought using the same metrics as those used by traditional radio.
“Consumers are increasingly tuning to online radio and advertisers need credible audience measurement to justify their increasing investment in this medium,” said Bill Rose, vice president, Arbitron New Ventures. “We are combining Arbitron’s expertise in radio ratings with Comscore’s online measurement capabilities to provide the numbers that agencies need to evaluate online radio in the same terms as traditional broadcast media.”
“By leveraging Comscore’s large and representative sample of online listeners, we are not only able to provide reliable representation of listening at home, but also at work and universities, where broadband connections are common and listening to online radio is at its peak,” said Lynn Bolger, executive vice president, agency development, Comscore Media Metrix. “We consider this ratings service to be a critical step in the continued commercialization of this quickly growing medium.”
“These ratings will help agencies make online radio a key part of the media mix because they provide the accountability needed to justify their advertising investments,” added David Goldberg, vice president and general manager, music, Yahoo!.
“Entertainment programming is more important than ever to online consumers and online radio, in particular, has become an integral part of their daily routines,” stated Bill Wilson, senior vice president and general manager of AOL Entertainment. “Providing a credible and familiar resource, like Comscore Arbitron Ratings, will help agencies and advertisers better evaluate the great opportunity to add online radio advertising to their mix of media.”
“Arbitron and Comscore Media Metrix are well respected by agencies and advertisers and they provide the credibility needed for online radio measurement,” said Chris Korol, product manager of MSN Entertainment.
The Comscore Arbitron Online Radio Ratings service will provide customers with Average Quarter Hour and Cume audience estimates for 38 demographics and 15 standard broadcast dayparts. Each month Arbitron will publish the average weekly audience for persons 12+, Monday through Sunday, 6AM-Midnight on its Web site ( www.arbitron.com).
Arbitron Inc. (NYSE: ARB) is an international media and marketing research firm serving radio broadcasters, cable companies, advertisers, advertising agencies and outdoor advertising companies in the United States, Mexico and Europe. Arbitron’s core businesses are measuring network and local market radio audiences across the United States; surveying the retail, media and product patterns of local market consumers; and providing application software used for analyzing media audience and marketing information data. The Company has also developed the Portable People Meter (PPM), a new technology for media and marketing research.
Arbitron’s marketing and business units are supported by its research and technology organization, located in Columbia, Maryland. Arbitron has approximately 1,700 employees; its executive offices are located in New York City.
Through its Scarborough Research joint venture with VNU, Inc., Arbitron also provides media and marketing research services to the broadcast television, magazine, newspaper and online industries.
About Comscore Media Metrix
Comscore Media Metrix, a division of Comscore Networks, provides industry-leading Internet audience measurement services that report - with unmatched accuracy - details of online media usage, visitor demographics and online buying power for the home, work and university audiences across local U.S. markets and across the globe. Comscore Media Metrix continues the tradition of quality and innovation established by its Media Metrix syndicated Internet ratings - long recognized as the currency in online media measurement among financial analysts, advertising agencies, publishers and marketers - while drawing upon Comscore's advanced technologies to address important new industry requirements. All Comscore Media Metrix syndicated ratings are based on industry-sanctioned sampling methodologies.
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The statements regarding Arbitron in this document that are not historical in nature, particularly those that utilize terminology such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “likely,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “estimates,” “believes” or “plans,” or comparable terminology, are forward-looking statements based on current expectations about future events, which Arbitron has derived from information currently available to it. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that may cause our results to be materially different from results implied in such forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include whether we will be able to:
- renew all or part of contracts with large customers as they expire;
- successfully execute our business strategies, including implementation of our Portable People Meter services;
- effectively manage the impact of consolidation in the radio and advertising agency industries;
- keep up with rapidly changing technological needs of our customer base, including creating new proprietary software systems and new customer products and services that meet these needs in a timely manner;
- successfully manage the impact on our business of any economic downturn generally and in the advertising market in particular;
- and successfully manage the impact on costs of data collection due to privacy concerns and/or government regulations.
Additional important factors known to Arbitron that could cause forward-looking statements to turn out to be incorrect are identified and discussed from time to time in Arbitron’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including in particular the risk factors discussed under the caption “ITEM 1. BUSINESS – Business Risks” in our Annual Report on Form 10-K.
The forward-looking statements contained in this document speak only as of the date hereof, and Arbitron undertakes no obligation to correct or update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
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