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Last Week at OPS NY

June 18th, 2015 by Juliana

Chartbeat had a blast at the OPS New York conference last week. Our team loved hanging out with ad operations and digital revenue teams and learning all about what everyone’s working on these days.

Big crowd thinking about big issues
There are a ton of major questions on the minds of the Ops community, and it showed. From programmatic to non-human traffic to new site redesigns, there were a lot of interesting discussions going on and ideas shared about all things revenue and ads.

Engagement is a “logical extension of viewability”
At least that’s what Michael Silberman, the General Manager of Digital at New York Media thinks. Michael joined fellow bright minds Shenan Reed (MEC Head of Digital, North America), Michael Sebastian (Reporter, Ad Age) and moderator Romy Newman on the OPS Chartbeat panel, “Beyond Viewability: Making Engagement Tangible”.

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Discussing this topic to a packed crowd, the panelists agreed that while there is still work to be done in standardizing viewability metrics amongst brands, agencies, and publishers, measuring and monetizing engagement will continue to grow in popularity. Michael Silberman echoed this when he commented on reporting on attention data to clients,

“There is no question that our clients and their agency-partners want more information – want to better understand how our audience is better connecting with their brands.”

Multiple Shoutouts to the Financial Times
The Financial Times Cost Per Hour metric and time-based selling system got much love at OPS. Multiple speakers mentioned the Financial Times’s success in selling time as one of the most exciting initiatives in the industry.

Additionally, widespread interest in time-based selling was apparent at the Financial Times’s session at OPS – many questions were asked about the how-tos of selling time – while the audience got fired up discussing about the benefits of monetizing time over impressions.

We’re already so excited about next year’s OPS! Shoot us an email if you’d like to chat in the meantime!

Chartbeat loves any excuse to party, and last Thursday, December 11th was no different: We got together with the Financial Times to co-host a party feting time and attention in digital advertising. There’s been a lot of discussions in the digital media landscape this year around moving past the click, valuing attention and using time as a currency, so we figured why not get some of the boldest minds in advertising together to share their ideas?

And so we did, with flash talks from these bright folks:

  • Nancy Brennan, Global Head of Marketing, Banking and Markets, Bank of America Merrill Lynch
  • Coleen Cahill, Executive Director of Communications, Brand Union
  • Brendan Spain, US Commercial Director, Financial Times
  • Tony Haile, CEO and Fearless Leader, Chartbeat
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    Nancy spoke about the need for brands to breakthrough to their users and capture their attention, whereas Coleen discussed the ongoing importance of narratives and storytelling as brands try to connect with their users. Things got more tactical with Brendan sharing his experiences thus far piloting time-based campaigns with clients for the Financial Times, and Tony wrapped things up with some of his predictions for 2015.

    It was a blast getting top publishers, agencies, and brands in the same room to talk about these hot topics – it probably helped that guests were fueled by an open bar featuring the Attention Grabber, the night’s signature cocktail.

    That’s all I’ve got to report but we’re planning our next event for early 2015. If you’ve got a hot topic or brilliant minds you want to hear about/from, let me know.


    tl;dr You advertising/sales colleagues can now sell ads based on your audience’s Engaged Time with Chartbeat ads tools. Tell them to go to this webinar to learn more (oh, and you can come, too).

    I know a lot of our Chartbeat Publishing users are producing valuable content that captures the attention of often-distracted online visitors for significant amounts of time. I’ve seen those Engaged Time numbers you guys tweet out and they’re impressive. Yet many publishers struggle to fully monetize the quality editorial content their teams create because these publishers can’t prove to advertisers why their content is worth more than standard click-bait fare.

    Click metrics have failed to accurately measure the value of placing display ads by content that captures audience time and attention. And frankly, that sucks because studies by folks like Yahoo and Google (and Chartbeat) prove that time should a key metric for advertisers: how long visitors spend actively engaging on a page while exposed to ads correlates to things like brand recall and recognition. (Intrigued? We’ll discuss these findings more at the webinar.)

    Here at Chartbeat we’ve been building tools that help advertising teams sell ads based on how much time visitors spend actively engaging on a page while ads are exposed. Our tools help quality publishers prove to advertisers why their audience’s time and attention is worth a premium. So the blood, sweat, and tears you put into making good content can translate into your sales teams charging premiums for advertising on your site.

    Does that sound kind of neat? If you dig this idea, or you think your friends in the sales or advertising departments might, tell them about our webinar: It’s all about how publishers can sell time to their advertisers. Chartbeat Publishing for Editorial friends: You’re of course welcome to join the webinar as well – we just hope you’ll let the sales kids in on it, too.


    The online advertising world is buzzing today over the announcement from the Financial Times, published in The Drum, that the company is starting to sell its ads inventory using time—audience exposure time to ads, specifically—as a currency. The Financial Times has partnered with Chartbeat to measure and now monetize their audience’s time and attention.

    In The Drum, Jon Slade, the Financial Times Commercial Director of Digital Advertising and Insight, says, “We can now report back to a client and say ‘we served you a thousand ads, and of those, 500 were seen for one second, 250 were seen for 10 seconds and 250 were seen for 30 seconds,” Slade went on, “The next obvious step is to sell blocks of time.”

    Advertisers can now buy inventory based on how long readers are actively exposed to ads, and according to Slade, so far so good: “We have three trials running at the moment, and we’re able to tell pretty conclusively so far that when we serve an ad to an audience that we know is going to spend a long time with the ad in view that the benefit to that client is far more profound.”

    And the data backs it up:


    Here at Chartbeat, we’re excited to help pioneer this movement of publishers going beyond just measuring their audience’s attention, but actually monetizing it as a means to build sustainable businesses based on the quality of their content and loyal audiences.

    If you’re interested in learning more about how you can sell ads based on your audience’s time, check out our upcoming webinar. Want a personalized walkthrough of our Ad Sales platform? Get in touch with us. We’d love to show you what we’ve been working on.


    Curious to know what one of the boldest minds in online advertising is thinking about these days? Check out what Jon Slade, Commercial Director for Global Digital Advertising and Insight for the Financial Times, shares in a recent piece by ClickZ, “The Financial Times’ Perspective on Ad Viewability.”

    In this pithy piece, Slade talks about industry concerns surrounding viewability as it embarks on its path to standardization and the “critical issue” of accurately measuring impressions.

    We were excited to get a shout-out from Slade, who mentioned the work Chartbeat and the Financial Times have been doing together regarding the application of audience attention metrics to new and premium types of display advertising formats. Slade states:

    “In addition to optimizing our site to ensure maximum viewability for our clients, we’re also working with Chartbeat to measure not just whether an ad is seen or not, but for how long. We believe that the amount of time the target audience is exposed to the advertiser’s message has a direct effect on its impact. We can tell our clients how long each impression has been viewed, and the total duration of exposure across the campaign.

    In essence, there’s no reason why publishers’ can’t start to trade ‘exposed time’ as a currency, not just impressions. This is a metric that we feel is closer to the actual outcome an advertiser is seeking – impressions themselves are just a convenient mechanism to trade.”

    We don’t think we could have said it any better ourselves. In response to this piece, Chartbeat ads product guy Alex Carusillo notes, “Viewability is really important and should happen no matter what. But we think what comes next is the most exciting part. When you look at Active Exposure Time, that black box of viewability opens up and you can see the difference between good and bad impressions. We’re lucky to be partnering with Jon and the FT to turn audience attention into something publishers can build businesses on.”

    Check out this visualization below to get a sense of how Chartbeat metrics can measure impression quality:

    Fake iceberg copy

    Do you have questions about this stuff? Or maybe something to say? Let us know in the comments below.