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WAA/IAB – Collaboration on Metric Standards

Posted by widgetgirl on April 21, 2008

As many of you know, I have been working very closely with the Web Analytics Association and the IAB to help iron out the confusion to the member organizations on metric standards for web measurement. The below press release is the result of this effort – and although that it may seem like words on paper, there has been a lot of thought and effort into how this communication will work across the organizations. I have been personally involved from WAA’s side and have been appointed the “Liaison from the WAA to the IAB”. As an active member of the WAA’s Standards Committee, I can tell you that the focus is always on the practitioner and the users of these metrics – how do we make the terminology clear and consistent across the “practice of web analytics”.

To understand the differences between the WAA and the IAB, you can read my posting from several months back that also ran in the Metrics Insider email newsletter published by MediaPost.com.

This formal announcement on collaboration is an exciting effort which will be met with both enthusiasm and criticism. I welcome comments from “both sides of the aisle” on this one. I do want to hear what the questions and concerns are and will actively do my best to respond to each.


The Web Analytics Association and the Interactive Advertising Bureau Increase Collaboration on Web Metrics Standards

WASHINGTON, DC–(Marketwire – April 21, 2008 ) – Today the Web Analytics Association (WAA) and the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) announced their intention to work more closely together to increase consistency and clarity around Web metrics standards. Both organizations have independently made strides toward the standardization of terms commonly used in the advertising and analytics fields. The purpose of the new partnership is to better communicate the goals of metrics standards to the two organizations’ respective memberships and target audiences, as well as to better convey the goals of each organization and the subtle differences that may occur among metrics standards.

The WAA and the IAB have historically had different goals for metrics standardization. The WAA’s mission is to foster the growth and evolution of the Web analytics industry by encouraging that the name and definition of each metric is consistent across vendors. This reduces confusion for analytics professionals who are comparing vendors and integrating data from different providers.

The IAB is focused on increasing the reliability, consistency and transparency of the metrics used for buying and selling interactive advertising. The IAB’s Measurement Guidelines include specific technical processes that ensure the validity of interactive advertising currency.

While both the IAB and the WAA work toward standardization of metrics, due to the different missions they have, members of both organizations will benefit from increased communication.

“The partnership and transparency between the WAA and the IAB will ultimately help to abate confusion, which is exactly why we both advocate standards in the first place,” said Jim Sterne, founding chairman of the WAA. “While it is inevitable there will be differences in the methods we use and the standards we endorse, we each know about those differences and are able to educate our members before the public announcement is made.”

“We are very pleased to collaborate with the WAA,” said Randall Rothenberg, president and CEO of the IAB. “While our missions are different we share the goal of building the interactive marketplace.”

About the IAB:

Founded in 1996, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (www.iab.net) represents over 375 leading interactive companies that actively engage in and support the sale of interactive advertising. IAB members are responsible for selling over 86% of online advertising in the United States. On behalf of its members, the IAB is dedicated to the continuing growth of the interactive advertising marketplace, of interactive’s share of total marketing spend, and of its members’ share of total marketing spend. The IAB evaluates and recommends standards and practices, fields interactive effectiveness research, and educates marketers, agencies, and media companies, as well as the wider business community, about the value of interactive advertising.

About the Web Analytics Association

The Web Analytics Association is a not-for-profit professional organization dedicated to promoting the understanding of web analytics through education, advocacy, standards, research and technology. Founded by web analytics industry leaders, the mission of the association is to unite and foster the interests of practitioners, vendors, consultants and educators who use, sell, install, implement, consult, teach or train in the field of web analytics. For more information, or to become a member, please visit http://www.webanalyticsassociation.org.


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