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Nielsen to Measure Connected TV Campaigns on YouTube and YouTube TV for the First Time

3 minute read | October 2020

Expands Nielsen’s Advanced TV footprint, positions Digital Ad Ratings as the leading independent CTV measurement solution

New York, NY – Oct. 15, 2020 – Today, Nielsen announced that YouTube’s streaming TV inventory will be measured in Digital Ad Ratings and Total Ad Ratings to help media buyers and sellers better understand and verify audiences on both the YouTube and YouTube TV apps on connected TVs (CTV). This announcement expands Nielsen’s ability to measure YouTube beyond computer and mobile and builds on Nielsen’s expanding Advanced TV product suite that also includes addressable TV measurement. The first phase of measurement will be enabled in the first half of 2021, beginning with YouTube TV and extending to the YouTube app on connected TVs in the U.S. shortly thereafter, ahead of the 2021-2022 Upfronts.

It’s undeniable that TV is becoming more digital. With more than three-quarters of U.S. homes owning one or more connected device and streaming accounting for 25% of total TV usage, it’s more important than ever to account for audiences across all platforms, including connected TVs. The CTV space continues to experience tremendous fragmentation as more players launch new services, causing data to be siloed within different platforms. According to Nielsen’s recent Beyond Streaming report, YouTube accounted for 20% of all streaming usage in the U.S. With this coverage expansion, Nielsen is bringing unprecedented transparency to the leading ad supported streaming service, giving marketers increased confidence in their investments and the ability to better measure the success of their campaigns across platforms. 

“Over 100 million people in the U.S. watch YouTube and YouTube TV on their connected TVs every month. Advertisers are asking for third-party measurement partners like Nielsen to provide a complete view of YouTube and YouTube TV audiences, so they can understand the scale of the audience they’re able to reach through CTV campaigns,” says Debbie Weinstein, Vice President, Global Solutions, YouTube.

Nielsen’s Digital Ad Ratings is the gold standard in delivering ad measurement across computer, mobile and connected devices. As advertisers continue to look for holistic measurement across all video, Nielsen’s ability to measure YouTube is key to providing cross-platform metrics that media buyers and sellers can transact on. With these integrations, Nielsen is able to measure viewing of ads and provide independent audience reporting across all platforms. 

“As streaming through connected devices surges, measuring the audience is critical as the industry demands a currency grade solution that provides marketers and publishers holistic, cross-platform metrics about advanced TV campaigns,” said Scott Brown, GM of Audience Measurement at Nielsen. “Because connected TV is addressable by nature, expanding our relationship with Google to measure YouTube audiences on connected devices is an important step to deliver cross media ad measurement and comparability between CTV and addressable on linear TV.”

Digital Ad Ratings is the market-leading independent, third-party solution that provides demographic audience measurement on connected devices. The expansion of Nielsen’s Digital Ad Ratings measurement for YouTube through connected devices builds on Nielsen’s commanding coverage of the connected TV space.

About Nielsen

Nielsen Holdings plc (NYSE: NLSN) is a global measurement and data analytics company that provides the most complete and trusted view available of consumers and markets worldwide. Nielsen is divided into two business units. Nielsen Global Media provides media and advertising industries with unbiased and reliable metrics that create a shared understanding of the industry required for markets to function. Nielsen Global Connect provides consumer packaged goods manufacturers and retailers with accurate, actionable information and insights and a complete picture of the complex and changing marketplace that companies need to innovate and grow. Our approach marries proprietary Nielsen data with other data sources to help clients around the world understand what’s happening now, what’s happening next, and how to best act on this knowledge.

An S&P 500 company, Nielsen has operations in over 90 countries, covering more than 90% of the world’s population. For more information, visit



Sarah Muratore