Twitch has granted Nielsen access to its 50,000-viewer research panel for the first time, allowing the audience measurement firm to connect actual viewing habits of esports fans to their survey responses. Parts of the study will be published by Nielsen today, but other findings will be folded into research products sold to clients asking for more detail on the audience for particular esports or gaming personalities on the Amazon-owned site. “There’re certainly lots of findings about the data, but to me the bigger story around this is that we’re starting to get a peek into who is on Twitch, and what the audience looks like,” said Neilsen Esports Managing Dir Nicole Pike. Twitch has made its Twitch Research Power Group available to individual agencies before, but has never allowed a research firm access. By matching up the survey responses to actual Twitch viewers, Nielsen can tell clients which esport draws the longest viewing times for fans, and what other entertainment and brands enjoy the loyalty of viewers of particular teams, or games. Those are questions routinely asked by brands considering deals in traditional sports, Pike said. Twitch Senior Manager of Audience Insights Colan Neese said his company decided to work with Nielsen because it is a "reputable brand." Neese: "The methodologies applied by other companies rarely capture people who actually watch esports, let alone the Twitch viewer. We saw this as a good opportunity to ensure there was accurate data around this important part of the gamer ecosystem."
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