Nielsen Introduces Database Designed to Measure Ad Campaign Effectiveness

It aims to sway marketers away from 'hopes and dreams' to 'dollars and cents'

The database tracks thousands of campaigns across multiple product categories in 50 countries. Getty Images, Nielsen
Headshot of Paul Hiebert

Today, global measurement and data analytics firm Nielsen is rolling out a new tool called Nielsen Compass, which matches audience levels across various mediums with sales data to gauge an ad campaign’s return on investment.

The database tracks thousands of campaigns across multiple product categories in 50 countries. While Nielsen Compass doesn’t disclose numbers around specific brands or publishers, it’s meant to provide marketers with an opportunity to spot trends and set expectations for cross-media campaigns running on TV, digital, display, social, search, print, radio and out-of-home.

With marketing budgets under stress and multiple agencies announcing layoffs following the Covid-19 outbreak, pressure to turn every ad dollar into a robust line of revenue is currently being felt throughout the industry.

“As budgets get extra scrutiny during the pandemic, you really want to focus on the things that work,” said Matt Krepsik, Nielsen’s global head of analytics. “You really want to move away from hopes and dreams and aspirations, rainbows, unicorns, and start focusing on tangible dollars and cents.”

Krepsik noted that though the pandemic has accelerated the evolution toward more transparency and performance-based metrics, the industry, in its pursuit to remove waste from the system, has been moving in this direction for years.

Apart from providing agencies, advertisers and publishers an overview of campaigns out in the world, Nielsen anticipates its new offering will assist in the development and strategy of a marketing effort prior to launch.

“Shifting gears into the predictive space, into the planning space, is where we see this going next,” said Krepsik.

Last month, Nielsen’s CEO and chief diversity officer David Kenny said the company plans to complete the separation of its market research business (Nielsen Global Connect) from its media measurement business (Nielsen Global Media) in the first quarter of 2021. Nielsen hired Jacqueline Woods late last year to lead marketing efforts of its Global Connect division and help transform the unit into an independent, publicly traded company.


@hiebertpaul paul.hiebert@adweek.com Paul Hiebert is a CPG reporter at Adweek, where he focuses on data-driven stories that help illustrate changes in consumer behavior and sentiment.
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