×

Tubular Labs Brings in Viacom, BuzzFeed, Other Media Partners on Project to Establish Social-Video Metrics

Is it possible to get a de-duplicated count of video viewers and watch time across social-media platforms?

Tubular Labs, a digital-video research and measurement firm, thinks it can crack that nut — and it has pulled in more media partners to collaborate on developing standards for tracking viewership across YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other platforms.

Viacom, Ellen DeGeneres’ Ellen Digital Network and Corus Entertainment have joined Tubular’s Global Video Measurement Alliance (GVMA) initiative. They join initial partners BuzzFeed, Vice Media and Group Nine Media.

It has an official-sounding name, but the GVMA is not a trade association or a standards-setting body. Rather, it’s designed as a collaborate project to define what cross-platform social viewing metrics should look like, said Allison Stern, co-founder and chief strategy officer at Tubular Labs.

“Step 1 was to define the problem in the marketplace, and step 2 was to bring folks together to solve it,” Stern said. “It’s not impossible to solve. You just need to get everyone together to solve it.”

Why couldn’t Tubular Labs develop these measurement metrics by itself? “The thought of it is, this is bigger than us,” Stern said. “We are not trying to solve something in a vacuum. We’re truly trying to let the industry drive the development of this.”

The media partners that have joined Tubular’s GVMA are encouraged the effort will produce a meaningful way to track social video views.

“As we continue to invest in audience development and original premium programming from our flagship brands, we look forward to working with the Global Video Measurement Alliance to establish unified methods of measurement for social video,” Kelly Day, president of Viacom Digital Studios, said in a statement.

Michael Riley, GM of Ellen Digital Ventures, added, “Tubular Labs has been a crucial solution for reporting to our partners on content effectiveness and video performance. We’re excited to participate in the GVMA and this next step towards the unification of global content measurement, allowing us to fully understand, interpret and activate our extensive cross-platform global social reach.”

Since the GVMA launched in January 2019, the companies have been working in closed-door meetings, reviewing technical challenges and co-developing content measurement solutions with the Tubular Labs data science and engineering teams.

The first two new global, cross-platform reach and engagement metrics to come out of the GVMA initiative are those to measure de-duplicated unique viewers and minutes watched. When applied alongside social video metrics of views, comments, shares and followers, according to Tubular, the new metrics will finally provide the full picture of what people are watching and how they engage with content.

GVMA partners will have early access to the metrics through the summer. Stern said Tubular plans release to actual numbers on de-duplicated viewers and watch time starting in the third quarter of 2019.

The difficult technical problem will be how the metrics handle de-duplication of viewers. Stern declined to say how Tubular or the GVMA partners are planning to tackle the issue of how to track unique viewers across multiple services. “That’s literally at the core of this,” she said. “We have put that in the hands of the GVMA founders to figure out.”

“The Holy Grail is de-duplication and viewing numbers across all platforms,” Stern said. “Nielsen and comScore are spending time on the problem of de-duping TV and digital, and long term we would love to partner with others to measure de-duped audience across digital, TV and social.”

Tubular’s new metrics in association with the GVMA are the first of their kind for social video, said Howard Shimmel, president of Janus Strategy & Insights and former chief research officer at Turner. “These metrics have existed for digital websites forever, and this is the first move towards parity for the research community,” he said.

Founded in 2012, Tubular Labs counts more than 250 customers, including broadcasters, publishers, and brands. The company measures 5 billion videos, 400 million video consumers, 13 million creators, 150,000 brands and 1 million sponsored videos across platforms.

More Digital

  • BritBox to Roll Out in the

    'Downton Abbey' and 'The Office' Heading to BritBox as Streamer Unveils U.K. Launch

    British broadcasters the BBC and ITV have formally agreed to launch their joint streaming service, BritBox, in the U.K. in the fourth quarter of 2019. It will be priced at £5.99 ($7.50) per month, making it the same price as the cheapest Netflix subscription in the U.K. ITV will control BritBox, holding a 90% stake. [...]

  • Vobile - ZEFR acquisition - Yangbin

    Zefr Sells Its Copyright-Flagging and YouTube Channel-Management Businesses to Vobile for $90 Million

    Vobile Group, a video protection and measurement company, announced a deal to acquire Zefr’s RightsID copyright-management and ChannelID YouTube channel-management businesses for about $90 million. According to the companies, Zefr’s RightsID and ChannelID together generated over $40 million in revenue in 2018 and were profitable. The deal stands to more than triple the revenue for [...]

  • Justin Connolly

    Disney Merges All Media Sales and TV Channel Distribution Under Justin Connolly

    Disney promoted longtime ESPN exec Justin Connolly to the new role of president, media distribution, overseeing a single organization that combines all of the company’s media sales and TV channel distribution operations. Connolly previously served as EVP, affiliate sales and marketing, Disney and ESPN Media Networks. Based in New York, he will report to Kevin [...]

  • NASA - International Space Station

    Hulu Is Getting NASA TV in Time for the Moon Landing Anniversary

    Hulu’s live TV service is getting NASA TV just in time for the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission. In addition to a live feed, which is available only to subscribers of Hulu’s live TV tier, Hulu is also gaining access to select NASA TV series on demand. The live TV deal was announced [...]

  • iheartmedia logo

    iHeartMedia Stock Drops in NASDAQ Debut

    Shares of iHeartMedia, the U.S.’s biggest radio network, fell as much as 7% after they commenced trading Thursday on the NASDAQ Global Select Market, and ended the day down around 3%. Last month, after exiting a year-long bankruptcy reorg, iHeartMedia announced it was approved for listing on NASDAQ, instead of pursuing an IPO. The company’s [...]

  • iHeartMedia-Pride-Media-TheOutcast-Logo

    iHeartMedia, Pride Media to Co-Produce Slate of LGBTQ+ Podcasts

    iHeartMedia is teaming with Pride Media, the media company whose brands include Out, The Advocate and Pride, to co-produce a slate of LGBTQ+ podcasts in 2019-20. The partnership will kick off with “The Outcast,” an iHeartRadio original podcast co-produced with Out Magazine. Hosted by Out Magazine deputy editor Fran Tirado, the weekly podcast will explore [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content