Help Centre

The answers to all of your frequently asked questions.

Our handy Help Centre covers some of the most common questions about TV advertising and defines the most widely used technical and jargony industry terms.

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TV received via aerial, satellite or cable is Linear TV, i.e. any TV that is not viewed over the internet, and is a scheduled programming broadcast. Sometimes referred to as Broadcast TV, it can be watched as Live TV or time-shifted as Playback TV.

TV channels (generally Linear) offered free to users/viewers; subscription free.

Linear TV (TV received via aerial, satellite or cable), scheduled programming, and watched live as it is broadcast.

Linear TV recorded on a Personal Video Recorder (PVR), VCR or other form of time-shifting technology and watched after the live broadcast. Also referred to as Playback TV.  Can be viewed up to 7 days from broadcast.

Linear TV recorded on a Personal Video Recorder (PVR), VCR or other form of time-shifting technology and watched after the live broadcast. Also referred to as Time-Shifted TV.

The cost of TV advertising is influenced by a number of factors including availability of inventory (or demand), seasonality, the programming, time of day, peak versus off-peak viewing and the desired audience. Networks will tailor suitable and cost-effective packages to meet the advertiser or brand objectives.

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Standard spot types

15 Seconds

30 Seconds

45 Seconds

60 Seconds

120 Seconds

180 Seconds

Additional spot types – typically at an extra cost are available – examples include:

First/Last in Break- When the spot is placed at the beginning or end of an ad break

Infomercial- Spot type acting as a standalone program typically 30 minutes in length

Standard Dayparts

Daytime:               06:00-18:00

Peak:                      18:00-22:30

Late night:            22:30-24:00

All day:                  06:00-24:00

Briefs or bookings may contain splits per daypart or may simply outline a desired “Peak/Off Peak” split.

All dayparts outside of 18:00-22:30 are generally referred to as “off peak”.

Daypart splits outlined on briefs are generally based on cost, tarp, thousands or spot numbers

Working Example

John from Brand A has requested a tarp based 60/40 POP (peak/off peak split) within his TV schedule. This will mean that John’s schedule will have 60% of his projected tarps placed into peak dayparts and 40% placed into off peak dayparts. 

Nielsen is the official industry appointed source of viewing data (currently Linear TV only), the process and methodology is independently audited and must comply with rigorous quality requirements.  Nielsen’s representative measurement panel currently comprises 900 homes (approx. 2,250 people aged 5+).

The insights and data are delivered on a daily basis. Overnight data (“live” and “as live”, see further explanation below) is used to determine how well the previous night’s programming performed. The final consolidated ratings data includes “time-shifted” viewing—the watching of recorded programming up to seven days after an original broadcast.

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In August 2020, the rollout of streaming meters commenced – the first step in measuring television audiences across multiple platforms, screens and devices. Find out more here.

The measurement of streaming audiences via the existing Nielsen Television Audience Measurement (TAM) system is in development (per above). Find out more here.

Other methodologies are currently available. These include the Broadcasters robust independent measurement systems which provide key metrics. Also, services such as Nielsen Consumer and Media Insights, Nielsen Digital Content and Ad Ratings which provide estimated audiences of Video On Demand platform usage.

The estimated total population available to target against within a nominated audience segment (demographic, region).

People Using Television - is the proportion of people viewing any TV channel at any point in time.

Television ratings (TV ratings or TVRs) are expressed as a percentage of the potential TV audience viewing at any given time.

If an advertising spot achieves a rating of 5 this means that 5% of the relevant target audience watched the spot being transmitted.

Term used to describe viewing data made available – by 9.30am - the following day. Comprised of ‘live’ and “as live” viewing. 

  • “Live” is anything played within 1 minute of broadcast

  • “As Live” replayed after 1 minute of broadcast and on the same day

This data is used to determine how the previous night’s programming performed.

The final consolidated ratings data adds to the overnight data – it includes “time-shifted” viewing - the watching of recorded programming (e.g via a Sky box, Freeview box or Vodafone TV) up to seven days after an original broadcast.

The total number (%) of different (unduplicated) people exposed to a particular media vehicle or message at least once within a specific time period. 

Specifically in reference to Linear TV viewing - the sum of the number of unique viewers who have seen at least one minute of an event or time band across its total duration.

The number of times an individual is exposed to an advertising campaign, program or time slot. For digital video, frequency is usually managed through the implementation of a Frequency Cap (see definition below) when planning media, as higher frequency levels usually come at the expense of reach. This is reported as average frequency and calculated as total number of impressions/reach = average frequency.

Restricting (capping) the number of times (frequency) a specific consumer is shown a particular advertisement, eg: 1 per day, 5 per week etc.

Definition: Target Audience Rating Point
The average viewing audience for a demographic expressed as a percentage of the relevant universe.

Formula: Tarp = Avg audience viewing a program / target universe x 100

Formula in action: 1,000,000 / 15,000,000 x 100 Tarp = 6.7

Definition: Cost Per Tarp

The cost of reaching a single TARP (Target Audience Rating Point), or 1% of a specific demographic audience segment viewing a broadcast programme at the time.

Formula: CPT= Cost of spot / Tarp (planned or actual)

Formula in action: $300 / 6.2 CPT = $48.39

Definition: Cost Per Thousand

The cost of reaching 1,000 people of a specific demographic. CPM is calculated by dividing the cost of an advertising placement by the number of people or impressions it delivers (in thousands)

Formula: CPM= Cost of Spot / Audience (000’s) x 1,000

Formula in action: $2,000 / 300,000 x 1,000 CPM = $6.67

Sometimes referred to as CTV, a Connected TV is a TV set that is connected to the internet. It allows viewers to “stream” TV i.e. watch Video On Demand platforms such as BVOD, as well as watching Broadcast/Linear TV, and, access other internet services. Also known as Smart TV.

VOD – Video On Demand - is a facility or platform offered by online video providers (which can include broadcasters) where households or individuals can access a movie, program or clip that can be watched at any time on any device.  There are various types of VOD services such as BVOD, SVOD, AVOD (see separate definitions)

TV – provided by Broadcasters - watched online is BVOD. It can be watched either live (via live streaming) or on-demand and is generally available via personal computer/laptop, mobile device or Connected TV. BVOD content is professionally produced, broadcast quality and includes TV shows and movies, archived shows and BVOD exclusives and originals. Sometimes referred to as Catch-Up TV, or On Demand.

SVOD – Subscription Video on Demand

A type of VOD service requiring payment or a regular subscription to watch content. Most SVOD services don’t offer advertising. Netflix and Disney+ are examples of SVOD.

AVOD – Advertiser Video on Demand

Any type of VOD service that is funded by the inclusion of advertising in between programs, movies or clips. This includes both BVOD services and services where the content is more heavily skewed to User-Generated Content (UGC) such as YouTube.

The delivery of video or audio content over the internet, stored in bits which enables it to be played in real time and without viewers having to wait for all the data to download.

TV or video content watched live over the internet at the same time it is broadcast.

The price an advertiser pays every time an online video ad runs through to completion. Cost Per Completed View (CPCV) can be used as a measurement of inventory efficiency, or as a currency for trading video. For example, rather than paying for all impressions, some of which may have been stopped part-way, an advertiser only pays an agreed fee for ads that are viewed to completion (CPCV=Cost/ Completed Views). This is relevant for online-only video platforms such as Facebook, but not for TV where all ads run to completion regardless of whether they are shown online or broadcast.

Brand safety is the importance of placing advertising and brand promotion in environments that do not damage the brand through perceived association with inappropriate content. This is measured as ‘Brand Safe %’ or the percentage of impressions that were displayed in brand safe environments. Technology can be used to block ads appearing on web pages where its appearance might negatively impact the advertiser’s brand.

Consideration needs to be given to a brand’s exposure in an environment that may damage the brand. For example, the brand ad could appear next to or within an unsafe environment such as religious extremism or pornography. This is an important consideration when advertising on online-only video platforms such as YouTube. TV environments are tightly controlled, curated and regulated, therefore considered more brand safe. Brand safety has ramifications for the audience’s level of trust in the platform. An environment that is not brand safe is less trusted, as are the advertising messages that the platform carries.

Get in touch with a network sales representative to discuss how to get your brand on TV.

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