Blog Post: How Do You Measure Up?

The incumbents will always do anything their power to stave off the challengers. Whether you are the senator from the great state of wherever, or the team lead, as an entrenched veteran in your area of expertise you must fight to keep your edge.

My mind wandered to that axiom when reading the comments of a product director at Nielsen at the closing of the Mobile Insider Summit last week:

“You will see iPad measurement this year.”

Having spent some years in media prior to coming to IT, I have my fair share of thoughts regarding the sender of dollar bills. Trillions in advertising revenue have been the result of this incumbent. In some markets, they gather data in a conceivable manner. In others, you don’t want to know. It’s why I have a hard time believing any of their numbers.

Now, the behemoth of an agency wants to continue to stay relevant with a new version of mobile traffic measurement. It made me really sad.

Which of course shows my still struggling immaturity at times with companies I have had some difficulties in the past. There are some solid numbers of traffic for mobile internet use, but that merely is the tip of the mobile iceberg. App use (as well as frequency), photo editing, video chatting, reading, watching, listening, you name it. Could Nielsen really have a way to measure all of that?

I hope so.

Part of me wants them to start sending out diaries again, just for the reminder of how awful media data gathering used to be (and still is for some markets). Instead, I would love it if manufacturers helped their fellow evangelists out with some back end software to share. It could be easily aggregated and monetized. Heck, I would sign my company up right now.

Would this make better software for users? Hard to say right now. While I would use any data I could to make my products better, I would need a few cycles delivered before I could realistically see it as actionable. We need to start though, and I can think of nobody better than an incumbent trying to stave off challengers.


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