Online ad revenue stunted due to lack of standardised measurement system

MUMBAI: Online advertising revenue has stayed stunted due to the lack of a standardised measurement system for the Internet, speakers at the WatSummit said.

Vdopia vice president Debadutta Upadhyaya said there is no agreement on how many online users there are in India. Some say 35 million while others put it at 75 million. An inflection point will be reached when there are 120 million users. She also said that the concept of ROI needs to be redefined.

The panel, which included UTV business head Sameer Pitalwalla, Communicate 2 founder and MD Vivek Bhargava and Nielsen director online division Karthik Nagaranjan, felt that the advent of 3G will lead to ads becoming immersive.
Ad formats will improve and this will grow revenue as video is something that clients understand. At the same time if CMOs of the top companies were to be educated on how digital works, then it would make a difference.

It was pointed that unless entertainment content is specifically created for the net, viewers will not hook on to it. The expectation is that over the next few years, a lot of entrepreneurial talent will come in to develop content for the Internet. The concept of entertainment will become broad to include applications like one that tells you how to run a marathon better. 
After this panel discussion Undercover Productions founder and CEO Abhigyan Jha made a presentation on Jai Hind TV which is an online GEC channel. He noted that we are moving from the age of information to the age of imagination. The gap between the consumer and producer has shortened. It took the site 15 days to get half a million views. Twitter, he noted, was the first age of imagination company.

Strategies that have worked in the past will need to change. One of the learnings of Jai Hind TV is that consumers will go the online route if the content offered is unique.

“Users crave for content not available anywhere else. Our aim was to take content directly to users and bypass a channel," said Jha.

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