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National Consulting Center reinvents audience measurement with cloud services

Centro Nacional de Consultoría reinventa la medición de audiencias con servicios de nube
Centro Nacional de Consultoría reinventa la medición de audiencias con servicios de nube | Imagen tomada de

CNC Ratings delivers granular and detailed information for more than 200 channels in just 30 minutes, a process that used to take 7 hours.

Centro Nacional de Consultoría reinventa la medición de audiencias con servicios de nube
Centro Nacional de Consultoría reinventa la medición de audiencias con servicios de nube | Imagen tomada de

This project, which is to be replicated in Peru and Chile, currently has clients in Colombia of one of the national private channels, the eight MinTIC regional channels, the two national public channels, as well as two pay television channels, one sports channel, and one local channel. in Medellin. Audience measurement is essential for decision-making in the television industry and, unlike traditional measurements that are based on a representative sample of just over 1,000 households located in 22 municipalities, CNC Ratings' offer has the capacity to analyze data from 85 thousand devices in 117 municipalities of the country. Despite the disruption caused by streaming platforms and changes in audiovisual consumption habits, traditional television continues to be essential for Colombians. To the more than 10 million households with access to open television, there are 6.3 million that have subscription television, a service that in 2022 continued to grow. According to the Reuters Institute Digital News Report, 55% of Colombians continue to consume news on television. Local reports indicate that, on average, more than 87% of households in Colombia watch television in one day.

And it is that knowing the viewers in depth is essential for the success of the television industry in the face of on-demand audiovisual consumption and, as in so many other industries, information is worth gold. Measurements help advertisers make informed decisions about where, when, and for how much to advertise. It is the most accurate guide to determine which channel to invest in and, at the same time, justify why the payment for a commercial with the same duration, broadcast at the same time, has different rates from one channel to another. It provides companies in the sector, such as channels and content producers, with tools to design their programming and negotiate with advertisers based on real and timely information. And, above all, this information makes it possible to identify trends and consumption patterns by viewers in order to better understand them, improve the content and attract more viewers.

In these times of battle for attention, the traditional methods for measuring audiences -which have traditionally been done with devices installed in the televisions of just over 1,000 homes in 22 municipalities of the country- may be insufficient to fully understand the preferences of more than 50 million viewers. Therefore, the Centro Nacional de Consultoría (CNC), which began its history with the traditional way of measuring the media in the 70s, knew that there were great opportunities to be able to offer viewers content aligned with their expectations. To achieve this, these information gaps needed to be filled and, armed with technology, innovation and the power of cloud computing, he decided to break the mold of audience measurement.

Reinvent audience insight

The new audience measurement system devised by the Centro Nacional de Consultoría left behind the special devices installed in homes. Instead, it used the two-way communication capability found in most modern cable TV set-top boxes to extract granular, real-time information on audience behaviors. Each interaction of a viewer with his decoder generates information that reaches a central database and leaves a record as detailed as the time the decoder was turned on or the second this household changed channels.

This makes it possible to understand how many people watch a certain program, what is their permanence time, at what point do they abandon that programming and which channel do they choose instead. All this data is collected by CNC Ratings to structure it, interpret it and then project it into graphs that adapt to the needs of each client.

CNC Ratings carried out a first pilot in Bogotá through one of the cable television operators, which represented an important exploration exercise, but still without the national scope that it intended. Convinced of the enormous value of this information, the cable television operator with the largest participation in the country -which serves almost half of the homes with pay TV- allowed it to expand this measurement spectrum not only in quantity but also in geographic coverage. Thus, the observation of consumption habits went from measuring just over 1,000 homes to taking the pulse of 85,000 homes, and from studying 22 to 117 municipalities in the country. CNC Ratings continues to grow rapidly and will measure 150,000 homes in the first half of this year.

A transformation to scale and measure more homes

Analyzing the behavior of tens of thousands of decoders across the country generates enormous amounts of information every minute. Continuing to scale represented a great technological challenge and a compelling argument to migrate to cloud services. “We started by receiving information from about 50,000 households, a very large number for what is customary for television measurement in Latin America. For the European or North American case, this is a normal number, but in Latin America there are measurements that are made with 600 homes, with 1,100 or even 3,000 the largest. That already represented a large data load for us, and a need to manage it that exceeded the capacity of our servers”, acknowledges Fabricio Alarcón, vice president of Brand and Media at CNC.

For CNC, Leaping into the Microsoft Azure cloud was key to achieving a broader, more detailed, agile and timely measurement in the Colombian market. “The first step was to change our mindset and migrate to the Azure cloud. And once we did that, the initial exercise was to come up with a database. Then we focus on cleaning them up, making them consistent, giving them structure, order and syntax, transforming them into audiences. A second challenge came: computers did not give us the capacity we needed. We opted to use virtual machines, which also operate in the Azure cloud”, explains Julián Riaño, data scientist at CNC. The flexibility and scalability of the cloud enabled a secure and efficient operation, he concluded.

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By: Despejando Dudas

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Examining the actions of a large number of decoders around the country produces vast quantities of data on a minute-by-minute basis. geometry dash online

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