FT Launches Cost Per Hour Digital Ad Metric

FT May 2015The Financial Times (FT) has unveiled a new digital advertising metric, ‘cost per hour’ (CPH). Working closely with Chartbeat on the new time-based system, the FT said the CPH metric can increase marketing effectiveness by measuring not just whether an ad is seen or not, but for how long.

The full rollout follows a limited pilot last autumn with 10 clients including BP, iShares and IBM, which the publisher said generated over $1m in total incremental revenue. The FT said it can report on how long each impression has been viewed, and the total duration of exposure across the campaign.

“For the nearly three decades of commercial internet history, advertising has derived its value from one measure: how many people click on an ad,” said Dominic Good, the FT’s advertising sales director. “Low viewability scores and questions about advertising placement and fraud have increased the need for better measurement and transparency to demonstrate the actual outcome an advertiser is seeking. While CPM values every impression the same, CPH uses time to measure value. The FT has shown through extensive testing that brand familiarity and recollection among readers increases significantly the longer an ad is in view. Adverts seen for five seconds or more on FT.com show up to 50 per cent higher brand recall and familiarity than ads that are visible for a shorter period of time.”

The FT said it is working with other global publishers to develop and increase the use of CPH, with the intention of making it a standard digital trading currency across the industry.