Blubrry Podcasting recently made history as the first podcast-hosting service provider to have its podcast stats certified by the Interactive Advertising Bureau Tech Lab for Podcast Measurement Compliance.
“This is the gold standard. There is no substitution to certification of compliance,” said Todd Cochrane, Blubrry CEO. “Ad buyers, networks, podcast hosting platforms, and podcasters now have an audited, validated, certified platform ready to serve them.”
Blubrry, which has been providing podcasting podcast statistics since 2005, was one of several organizations taking part in the extensive independent auditing and certification process based on the standards within IAB’s Podcast Measurement Guidelines. National Public Radio, a nonprofit membership media organization, was also certified.
As part of IAB’s Podcast Technical Working Group, Blubrry and 31 other podcast and traditional media companies contributed to the Podcast Measurement Guidelines, released December 2017, that provide strict rules and guidelines as the basis of certification, including downloads, listens, advertising delivery and advertisement play.
As of today, Blubrry Enterprise customers are able to label their podcast statistics as IAB Certified to be in compliance with the Podcast Measurement Guidelines. Blubrry Hosting customers and those shows using the Blubrry redirect with other platforms will quickly follow (as outlined in this blog post). Blubrry customers should expect no changes to their metrics as the certified platform system has been in place since 2013.
Unlike other providers, Blubrry podcast statistics are platform agnostic, meaning statistics services are not limited to Blubrry hosting customers. This has given Blubrry valuable insights on numerous areas in podcasting, with tens of thousands of shows being measured since 2005.
IAB published the Podcast Measurement Guidelines last year. Those guidelines provided the first true industry-wide guidelines for measuring ad deliveries in podcasts. This year, IAB published the IAB Podcast Measurement Technical Guidelines Version 2.0.
The new guidelines provide a recommended process for generating audience and downloading metrics, with information on:
- Filtering for uniqueness
- Eliminating pre-load requests
- Eliminating potential bots and bogus requests
- Applying thresholds for what gets counted
- And more best practices.
The Version 2.0 guidelines are long and detailed and well worth reading. The document was developed by the IAB Tech Lab Podcast Technical Working Group, which was led by Steve Mulder (NPR) and Amit Shetty (IAB Tech Lab) The Group included:
- Acast Stories USA
- AdGear Technolgies, Inc.
- AdLarge Media
- Adswizz Inc
- CBS Local
- Cox Media Group
- Cyber Communications Inc.
- Digital Advertising Consortium Inc.
- Midroll Media
- Minnesota Public Radio
- New York Public Radio
- Pacific Content
- Triton Digital
- Westwood One
There’s been a lot of talk surrounding podcasting metrics lately. Some would say the state of measuring podcasts is a “Wild West” of varying methods with no centralized protocols. Others would say that they’ve had proven processes in place for years to accurately measure the audience of their podcasts. The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) has been working diligently to bridge the gap between these two mindsets. The organization made a big step forward earlier this week when it released its Podcast Ad Metrics Guidelines:
This document provides an introduction to tracking ad delivery in a podcast and attempts to provide clarity in the marketplace by describing common and existing practices. It breaks down some of the technical details of content and ad delivery and then defines the commonly used metrics, with some examples on how to measure those metrics. While we expect this document to be updated further as the market develops, we believe that this will help buyers, publishers, and the developers of technology by guiding them toward a common language.
The guidelines were released in the form of a downloadable 14-page PDF. A long list of contributing organizations, including ESPN, Midroll, LibSyn, Rawvoice, PodcastOne, NPR, and more, helped to finalize the rules set forth in the document. The guidelines contain much more information than we can cover in one blog post. But it’s definitely worth a read (especially the appendix section in the last few pages) if you’d like to know more about the technical aspects of podcast download measurement.
To see how some noteworthy representatives in the podcasting space reacted to the IAB document, check out this article from Radio Ink.
The term “upfront” comes from the television industry. Upfronts are meetings that are usually held a few months before a new TV season is about to begin. In these meetings, TV networks commune with potential sponsors to hammer out advertising deals for the coming season. Thus, giving those ad buyers the ability to purchase their ad spots “upfront.” In September, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) will hold its first ever podcast upfronts in New York.
IAB’s upfront will be a one-day event that will consist of a series of presentations as well as a “celebrity keynote speaker” that has yet to be announced. The following companies are scheduled to attend the upfront:
IAB is hoping this event will drum up more interest in the medium of podcasting as a solid platform for advertising. IAB is also hoping to attract ad buyers from both the traditional radio space and the digital media space. Representatives from both groups are often tasked with buying podcast ads, which is unique to podcasting’s position of being a purely digital medium that often (especially in the case of NPR) repurposes radio broadcasts.
You can learn more about IAB’s upfront event and request an invite at the IAB website.