Don’t Forget the ‘Torso and Tail’ Players

Popular sites need consideration in media measurement standards

Google’s Barry Salzman sees value in the ad industry initiative to develop common standards for measuring the reach of ads online—and across all platforms—but worries that some popular online sites will lose out.

During an Advertising Week panel discussion yesterday, Salzman described the group at risk as “torso and tail publishers,” which includes blogs. He noted that they’re not well represented within the group that’s developing the new measurement standards—a joint venture of the ANA, 4A’s, and IAB—and therefore may lack consideration in the process.

“We need to make sure we’re not disadvantaging the publishers who I think are the real drivers of where this industry is headed,” said Salzman, head of media and platforms for Google in the Americas. 

Such publishers won’t rank highly via TV-like standards like reach frequency. So, initiative participants need to be careful not to create biased measurement metrics, Salzman said.

After all, he added, “we created a new medium to do things like interactivity and measure impact differently. So, the quicker we get there, the better off everyone in this room will be.”

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