IAB Singapore scheme to establish benchmark on viewability in Southeast Asia

Internet advertising body IAB Singapore has launched an initiative to find a benchmark for digital ad viewability in Southeast Asia.

The announcement:

Singapore, May 17th 2016: The IAB Viewability Roundtable is an initiative to establish a viewability benchmark for ad performance in Southeast Asia. Over the course of the next four months, the IAB will bring together major players from across the entire marketplace of platforms, publishers, agencies and brands to piece together a white paper to establish a measurement standard – and have it third-party verified.

To ensure they achieve the level of transparency required, the IAB attracted high-level representation from across the board to participate. Members included senior digital leaders from publishing platforms such as Google, LinkedIn, Facebook, MediaCorp and global brand agencies including MEC, SPH, PubMatic, Xaxis and Starcom. The 15 participants included IAB CEO Miranda Dimopoulos, who moderated the event led by comScore Senior VP, Joe Nguyen.

Currently, there is a need to test inventory in order to improve transparency, to ensure that ads are being viewed and acted upon by real people within the increasingly automated industry.

Values and definitions

Strictly quantitative, the discussion did not include the effectiveness or value of the viewability metric, as those fall into qualitative measures. Display advertising is classified as standard browsers across mobile, desktop, and tablet.  This white paper will be divided into four phases, with the first establishing definitions and a summary of the current landscape of visibility in the region.

Deep dive

The first hurdle while developing this white paper, was aligning a baseline metric between all publishers, brands and agencies present in the conversation. Certain publishers did not disclose their display advertising metric, others questioned the quality of viewability metrics.

After thoughtful and engaging discussion, the majority of participants agreed that the metric that will be put forward to be tested by a third party such as Moat and/or comScore for viewability in Southeast Asia, will be the MRC (Media Rating Council) standard of 50 percent pixels and view at 1 second.

The test will be for both video and display inventory using the same standard and is essentially counting Ad Slot viewability rather than the actual ad itself (i.e. we are not factoring in, at this point in time, whether the full ad, video or display, was actually loaded/served).

The lowest common denominator for all parties was viewability of 1 pixel greater than 0 seconds. For video display advertising, the standard was 50 per cent pixels from 0 seconds, where the video counter starts. As for the campaign threshold, it was agreed that viewability could never truly be 100 per cent.

Next steps

The next phase of research will be a deep dive into the effectiveness of the time individuals spent on the display advertisement. The IAB Viewability white paper will be completed within four months from the start of the test and will require the active participation of all members present at the first meeting. The Roundtable will meet once a month for the next four months to develop the next stages of the report. All members are required to attend in order to achieve a united voice within the industry.

Source: press release


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