Cumulus Media Inc. (NASDAQ: CMLS) and The Nielsen Company, the world leader in media measurement, today announced that starting in 2009 Nielsen will provide audience measurement and radio ratings in 50 small- and mid-sized US markets. The companies also announced that Clear Channel Radio will subscribe to the syndicated service in 17 of the markets in which the service will be offered. This concludes a process that commenced with Cumulus’ “request for proposal” and which evolved into an open search for the best in radio research.
“We initiated the RFP to improve the quality and value of radio ratings,” notes Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey. “That opened up a transparent process which gave us the option to talk to the best research practitioners in the world. We couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome. Nielsen is the gold standard for television advertisers who make nearly $80 billion worth of decisions in the U.S. based on Nielsen data. This is a great development for Radio.”
“Clear Channel Radio is delighted to have the choice to move to an improved audience measurement approach in these important markets and applauds Nielsen for bringing their exemplary business practices to radio,” said John Hogan, President and CEO of Clear Channel Radio. “This gives radio ratings greater accuracy, stronger accountability, and full transparency, and shows the true power of radio to reach the most coveted consumers.”
The Nielsen Company has more than six decades of experience measuring radio around the world. The service, which begins in Q3 2009, will use a proven and easy to use/easy to edit ‘sticker diary’ that has improved the quality of radio measurement data around the world.
In another major improvement from the status quo, Nielsen will use address-based sampling (ABS) to recruit sample households. Nielsen pioneered the use of ABS, which uses randomly selected addresses rather than telephone numbers, in its domestic television measurement in order to reach the 34% of U.S. households that are not covered by current sampling methods, including cell-phone only and many unlisted landline phone households.