ABC to audit mobile usage with Handmark

Audit Bureau of Circulations' latest digital measurement will give buyers increased confidence when placing ads on mobile, explains ZenithOptimedia president and CEO, Sunni Boot.

The Audit Bureau of Circulations’ (ABC) interactive unit, ABCi, yesterday announced it will audit mobile usage statistics for its member publishers and advertisers. To do this for some of its major newspaper and magazine members, ABC will work with Handmark, a mobile publishing app developer that works with many major media brands including Thompson Reuters, the Associated Press and the Wall Street Journal.

Mobile metrics is a key agenda item for ABC’s new digital committee, which was announced earlier this year, and it shows ABC’s commitment to evolving in the digital space, explains Sunni Boot, president and CEO of ZenithOptimedia.

‘As buyers, we rely on ABC audits to provide transparency and accountability. These are things relevant to all ad channels, including mobile,’ Boot, who is also on the ABC board of directors, tells MiC. ‘The ABC brand gives media buyers confidence, so having this ‘gold standard’ move increasingly into the digital space is a very good thing for the industry.’

The mobile market and advertising forecasts on the medium are expected to top $3.3 billion by 2013, says Michael Lavery, ABC president and managing director, in a release. But it’s too early to see if, as more mobile app makers submit to ABC’s auditing process and reports, the partnerships will have a direct impact on pricing, says Boot.

‘There are many other factors at play in what is still a nascent market. But, certainly, as media buyers invest more in the mobile channel, independent auditing and verification by the likes of ABC will become more critical,’ she says.