Media Research Awards 2015: Sky Media takes Grand Prix
Those driving development in UK media research were celebrated on Wednesday (11 February) at the inaugural Mediatel Media Research Awards, hosted at London's prestigious Banking Hall.
The winners, who were rewarded for driving innovation in an industry where measurement and insight are at the very heart of business planning and success, were led by Sky Media, which took the Grand Prix prize along with Best Media Research Tracking Project for Sky AdSmart.
"Sky AdSmart has been an innovation in how TV advertising works in the UK and this has needed a robust research design to measure the impact of targeted advertising sent to set top boxes," said Richard Marks, director of Research the Media and chair of the judges.
"This project will continue to add to our understanding of how targeting works, so the overall Grand Prix deservedly goes to Sky Media for Sky AdSmart. The work is outstanding."
The judges were unanimous that Sky Media should take both awards for the work it has done with BDRC Continental in tracking the effectiveness of campaigns on the new AdSmart service.
Using an effective methodology and comprehensive coverage, this has involved over 14,000 interviews across 14 product categories so far, building a valuable library of case studies about how addressable ad targeting works in a TV context.
Winner of the Best Social Media Project was awarded to the BBC for its Social Insights project - which sought to improve the Corporation's relationship with audiences through social media and use research to determine a future strategy. The judges marked it out for its sheer scale and ambition.
"When you consider the BBC has around 800 social media accounts; and that the research had as its endpoint the ingraining of key findings into the day-to-day thinking that fuels those 800 accounts, the success of the project is indeed impressive," commented judge Brian Jacobs, founder of Brian Jacobs & Associates Ltd.
"The entire project was a daunting task which was expertly carried out."
The Best Custom Media Project was awarded to MTM for its study produced on behalf of Channel 4 and the Home Office investigating teen attitudes towards violence against women. The project, which was supported by CrowdDNA, was commended for the incredible quality of the work.
"The Best Custom Media Project covered a remarkably wide spectrum from the quirky, clever and low budget through to major large scale work - but all entries were of a very high standard," said judge Lynne Robinson, research director for the IPA.
"It was a very hotly contested and therefore well-debated category. However, MTM triumphed on the sheer rigour and incredible quality of the work produced."
The Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB) was crowned the winner of the Media Research Effectiveness Award for Radio: The ROI Multiplier. Judge Catherine Blizzard, director of marketing and audiences at BBC World Service, said the entire shortlist demonstrated real creativity in their use of a range of research techniques.
"However, the RAB was judged particularly highly for demonstrating how commercial radio is stepping up to the challenge of understanding return on investment for its clients."
The RAB's research required co-ordination with a range of media agencies to gather the radio ROI data and bring it together in a convincing way. It directly contributed to an additional £52m in radio ad sales that turned revenue decline into growth.
The MTM team
The award for Best Use Of Data Sets went to Kantar Media for the TGI Ad-Vantage solution.
"Kantar Media has undertaken a much needed industry initiative to bring together sales data and the rich profiling data of TGI and plugged it into programmatic buying platforms to allow for niche audiences to be found based on the multitude of TGI criteria or core pre-defined audiences that are regularly sought after," said Laura Chaibi, head of digital research, MBC.
Chaibi also said the data set is a much needed bridge to help media planners both plan and then execute a plan operationally within the buying system.
"Kantar's examples for the uplift in performance of campaigns booked through the TGI Ad-Vantage system are compelling, with consumers viewing ads 33% longer. TGI-Ad-Vantage not only proves there is still much to be improved on with programmatic buying, but also demonstrates the core importance of traditional data sets that house the hearts and minds of consumers and the very valid role it plays in planning advertising," she said.
The Excellence In Data Communication award, which celebrated research projects that have raised the bar in bringing data to life, was awarded to MEC for its reporting tool, DCor, that provides planners with near real-time, engaging visualisations of the performances of their digital campaigns.
Judge David Pidgeon, editor of Mediatel's Newsline, said that the sheer volume of data planners work with today can be overwhelming.
"For this reason, MEC won for creating such clear visualisations which could provide the right insight and allow planners to make the right decisions - however, the entire shortlist was deeply impressive and a joy to judge."
Finally, the Research Team of The Year was awarded to TV marketing body Thinkbox in a category that had over 15 entries ranging from research suppliers to media owners, media agencies and trade associations.
"The entries encompassed a huge array of work produced," said Robinson. "It was a fiercely debated category but the final decision was down to the quality, effectiveness and consistency of the work produced by Thinkbox."
Derek Jones, CEO of Mediatel, hosts of Wednesday's event, said: "In a world dominated by data, the measurement and insight provided by research teams has never been more important - for this reason, I'm thrilled to say that in our inaugural year we've seen dozens of incredible examples of exceptional work.
"A huge thanks to everyone for taking part. Our judges had a tough time picking winners from such a high quality crop of entries, but we really do feel the best practice on show here can help drive future innovation in the sector."
The awards will be proceeded by the Future of Media Research Conference on 10 March where a selection of the winners will showcase their work.