Wednesday, September 12, 2007

NBC Universal organizes ad research council

Media Post reports that NBC U is putting together an ad agency research council in order to advance the current state of media buying and planning. According to the article, "The effort, which is being headed by NBC Universal Senior Vice President-Market Development Debbie Reichig, a long-time Madison Avenue collaborator who developed a similar concept when she was a top marketing executive at Court TV prior to its acquisition by Turner Broadcasting System, comes as an array of third-party funded research initiatives are seeking to illuminate critical media marketplace issues."

This research endeavor certainly has more than enough financial and intellectual backing considering it has NBC U cash behind it as well as major Madison Ave. movers-and-shakers. In fact, the MediaPost article indicates that 15 of the biggest shops have already joined and more are expected to follow.

Bill has talked about NBC U's diversification into digital signage and their desire to offer a larger complement of alternative advertising services in the WireSpring blog, and chances are we'll be dealing with this kind of news on a much more regular basis. As big media outlets make more and more moves towards stretching their influence across different ad platforms, other smaller outlets will follow suit, so the research being done by the NBC U dream team (and other highly paid and highly influential media analysts) will likely set off a domino effect with multiple firms bringing new research and services to the fray.

It'll be interesting to see what exactly the NBC U group concludes, or for that matter whether try draw any conclusions at all. It's hard to say if any one group, person or company can truly grasp the best equation for reaching today's audiences, and many similarly-veined research efforts in the past have yielded little more than vague metrics, impractical approaches, and hopelessly biased data. NBC U claims to understand that the success of this offering depends on the collected research being accurate, unbiased and actionable. Whether they can deliver on such challenging goals remains to be seen.

Tags: NBC U, out-of-home media, advertising

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