Finally, a Better Way to Measure Impressions?

Tech startup RealVu believes it has the answer

Ad impression numbers are about to go down—that is, at least, if RealVu has anything to do with it. The Salt Lake City-based ad tech startup has, with the blessing of IAB and accreditation from the Media Rating Council, developed technology that measures exactly when an ad has been really, truly actually viewed. Traditionally ad impressions have been tallied from the publisher side, meaning that all instances in which an ad had merely been called up were counted, even if the ad never even loaded. But RealVu is taking reporting to the client side, along the lines of the “viewable impression” rule that IAB introduced last month as a pillar of its guiding principles for digital measurement. “We feel like we invented the viewable impression,” says Troy Tribe, president and COO of RealVu.

The result of this client-side measurement is an astounding 30 percent to 40 percent drop in ad impressions, Tribe says. (If counting “viewable impressions” takes off, the effect on ad pricing could also astound.)

On Monday, Horizon Media announced a deal to become the first media buyer using RealVu’s new tool for its digital clients. “With this technology we can do our own analytics and provide the most complete, true performance data picture for our advertisers,” Horizon CEO Bill Koenigsberg said.