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NIELSEN STARTS SPORT MARKETING SERVICE; NBA IS FIRST CLIENT
Published March 2, 1995
The NBA has signed a five-year agreement with Nielsen Media Research through which the league will have access to a broad range of national and local TV audience information. For the first time, the NBA will have access to customized marketing data on broadcast and cable TV across Nielsen's national and local services, on both a league and team-by-team basis. NBA Television Ventures President Ed Desser: "The Nielsen relationship will help us understand the needs and desires of our fans. Also, we will be able to better serve advertisers, networks, teams and other business partners." Robert Taragan, Exec VP/Marketing Nielsen Media Research: "By this agreement, Nielsen has literally broken the mold in how we deal with the unique needs of modern sports and entertainment organizations such as the NBA. In order to be responsive to these organizations, Nielsen has created a new Sports Marketing Service capable of providing customized reports with open access to information such as age, sex and income delivery that cuts across all of Nielsen's national and local services" (Nielsen/NBA). NUTS AND BOLTS: Nielsen spokesperson Jack Loftus told THE SPORTS BUSINESS DAILY that the NBA will not only have access to information such as what age groups are watching NBA telecasts, but also specially designed breakdowns of on demographics and consumer attitudes. For example, Nielsen could tell the NBA how many many people watching games have not bought a car in more than three years. Loftus noted that 12 NBA teams subscribe to the customized service on a local level. Nielsen can track what visiting teams or visiting superstars attract the biggest audiences. According to Loftus, the NBA came to Nielsen and asked for a more customized service that cuts across all of the various services Nielsen offers, such as ratings among different ethnic groups. Some of the data the NBA receives from Nielsen will be made public, but more detailed numbers will not be available. Nielsen is also in discussions with the NFL, NHL and NCAA. They were in "very active discussions" with MLB, but the labor strife has put those talks on hold. Other clients to Nielsen's Sports Marketing Service include a number of ad agencies and major sponsors, ESPN, numerous TV stations and regional cable networks (THE DAILY).