Ad Industry Roundup: DVRs; Online Ad Prices; Starcom MediaVest; Platform-A

David Kaplan
Tuesday, May 13, 2008; 4:06 PM

-- DVR viewers watch online ads, but don't pay attention: Google-owned DoubleClick's research arm, Performics, recently completed a survey of DVR owners that acknowledges wide ad-skipping. But the study makes the odd leap of noting that approximately half of DVR owners say they view online videos with ads?instead of skipping, since most overlays don't allow fast-forwarding through ads, these viewers just aren't paying attention. Roughly 35 percent say they occasionally pay attention when watching ads on TV, while only 9 percent are engaged when it comes to online video spots. Overall, 38 percent pay less attention to the online ads. Separately, Adweek reports that a MindShare study on American moms and DVR use shows 91 percent say they use the device to avoid ads.

-- Pubmatic: Online Ad Rates Drop 23 Percent: Online ad net operator Pubmatic has found that the sputtering economy has pushed ad rates down 23 percent overall in April. The PubMatic AdPrice Index is based on data from roughly 3,000 publishers and billions of ad impressions. CPMs for large sites (more than 100 million pageviews per month) dropped by 52 percent from 38 cents in March to 18 cents April. Medium-sized sites (1 million to 100 million page views per month) were nearly flat, with prices falling from 34 cents in March to 33 cents in April. Smaller sites managed to raise their prices, growing from $1.18 in March to $1.29 in April. As for verticals, social nets led the plunge with prices sliding 47 percent, from 37 cents in March to 19 cents in April, below January lows of 22 cents.

-- Starcom Meshes Performance Integrates Units: Publicis' Starcom MediaVest Group has decided to unify its performance marketing media agencies. The new single unit, dubbed Starcom Performance Marketing, brings together SMG Search, SMG Directory Marketing, and Halogen. The divisions will still have some degree of autonomy in terms of serving clients. Nancy Mullahy, appointed director of the consolidated entity, told ClickZ that since the performance-based marketing relies on sales and lead generation, it makes sense for the media shop's interactive units to pool their systems together.

-- Platform-A's Heading Down Under?: Platform-A's may be entering the Australian market, where it would compete with DrivePM and Adconion, among others. claims 90 percent reach across U.S. sites, but it's missing major international presence, something the Time Warner (NYSE: TWX) unit trying to fix as it integrates the international parts of Platform-A. AOL wouldn't confirm or deny plans for Australia, saying only, ", a Platform-A business, does not currently have operations in Australia," with the promise of an update if there are any developments.

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