NEWS: Barb gets it wrong on readers of Radio Times and cat fans
campaignlive.co.uk, Thursday, 12 January 1995 12:00AM
TV buyers targeting readers of the Radio Times or cat owners may have wasted thousands of pounds last year because of an error in the TV audience measurement system, Barb.
TV buyers targeting readers of the Radio Times or cat owners may have
wasted thousands of pounds last year because of an error in the TV
audience measurement system, Barb.
Some of the computer systems that carry TV viewing data have been
categorising cat owners as Radio Times readers and vice versa.
The error occurred after Pedigree Petfoods requested that a new audience
category be added to the Barb system to measure cat owners who were also
responsible for half of the consumer purchases made in their household.
The mistake only came to light after Pedigree continually analysed the
data to find out why it did not match its own knowledge of its
consumers’ lifestyle habits. Pedigree’s media company, Zenith Media,
then spotted the mistake in the codes used to classify the two types of
Lawrence Haslehurst, media services manager of Pedigree, admitted to
‘wasting quite a lot of time analysing the information’, although he
said that his company had not bought any campaigns on the basis of the
Peter Overy, the Radio Times marketing services manager, described the
mistake as ‘quite serious’. ‘It’s important that such fundamental things
should be beyond question,’ he said.
Bill Meredith, director of Barb, admitted the mistake may have been
‘extremely annoying for Pedigree and Zenith’, but thought it unlikely
that any other media company had used the data.
This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk
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