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Personal People Meters – the Price of “Moment-by-Moment” data

One of the heavily advertised advantages of PPM technology is the ability (for better or worse) to measure listenership moment-by-moment.

This sure is a seductive benefit (if we assume that it represents truth, which is another matter altogether), but it had me thinking: Doesn’t TV have this ability already? And how come we never hear about it?

It turns out they do.

A friend of mine who used to work at MTV told me that information is available, but MTV (certainly a network flush with resources) rarely purchased it.

“It was VERY expensive,” he said. He recalled one time the data was purchased, and that was during one of MTV’s ultra-expensive awards shows (and interestingly, the data showed that viewership went DOWN during every musical performance).

If MTV rarely springs for such data due to its price-tag, do you really think it’s going to be available at a bargain rate for you and me in Radio?

Think again.

I suspect this will turn out to be one of those phantom benefits of PPM, because the price will preclude almost any of us from buying it.

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