ComScore and PMB combine forces

The new data-sharing partnership will help buyers and publishers better understand online readers' behaviour, and determine which demographics are duplicated in print and on the web.

Canadian magazines and newspapers that are members of the Print Measurement Bureau (PMB) can now better understand the consumption habits of their online readers, according to PMB, which today annouced a partnership with comScore Canada to share data. Publishers and media agencies who subscribe to both comScore and PMB will have access to a grid of demographics data contributed to by both audience measurement organizations.

Demographic information like product consumption and brand preferences will for the first time be available for online readers of PMB-measured publications after analytics are put through a process called ‘constrained fusion,’ where print readers will be matched with their online demo twin, Steve Ferley, president, PMB tells MiC.

‘If in a database you have a male, aged 25 to 35, living in Toronto, with a personal income of X and a household income of Y, then his habits, his patterns, his readership, [and] his product usage are attributed in database B to a male who is also 25 to 35 years old with a personal income of X and a household income of Y,’ he explains.

This will allow them to attribute the consumption habits of print readers – for instance what kind of coffee that person drinks, where they book their yearly holiday – to that of online readers. The combined data from the twinned users can help determine how many readers are unique to the magazine, unique to the website, or if there is a duplication across the platforms.

This information, which will be available in a combined database for members who subscribe to both comScore and PMB, will give media buyers the ability to examine the differences and similarities between print and web audiences, says Ferley. Buyers have been demanding this insight since cross-platform media plans have become the norm in newspaper and magazine advertising, he adds.

While consumer behaviour details have been collected on print readers for years, the online realm has been not been as quick to provide the same depth. Brent Lowe-Bernie, president of comScore Media Metrix Canada, says PMB provides the kind of granular demographic information that’s never been available for online audiences in Canada.

‘The key thing is the richness of the PMB database as it relates to magazine readership and product usage. We’ll be able to look at that information as well as actual website activity,’ Lowe-Bernie tells MiC.

The new analysis will also allow PMB and comScore to determine the joint reach of a particular publication, which demographics cross over to online and print, and which are exclusive to one medium.

‘This is about cross-media behaviour and dimensioning the audience or…knowing more about the audience on the website so that one can understand the value of that traffic,’ Lowe-Bernie says.