The global Internet market measurer ACNielsen eRatings.com has announced its first New Zealand client - news ticker service 7am.com.
As well as running a "fast food" news service, often based on other media, from its own Website, 7am.com offers news services to other sites, usually on a "value exchange" basis - by which partner sites carry 7am.com's Java-based news ticker and clock poll applications.
The company's model, which sees its ticker displayed on thousands of other Web sites, makes it an obvious customer for the kind of global usage picture eRatings.com has been established to provide.
The private investors who bought most of the company from its founder Bruce Simpson this year will need to demonstrate viewership to advertisers to build revenue - and to do justice to the claim that 7am is "the world's most widely syndicated Web-based news service."
"ACNielsen eRatings.com's superb customer service demonstrated to us that they took our company's business seriously," 7am.com CEO John Ferguson said in a statement yesterday. "There was really only one choice for an independent company to audit our data as we go through this period of extremely rapid growth. We also feel very comfortable with the venture because of the brand and history of ACNielsen."
"With Nielsen NetRatings, companies like 7am.com and those that follow its fortunes have a truly objective and global tool to help measure its value," said Brian Milnes managing director, ACNielsen eRatings.com, Pacific. "This is critically important when so many Internet valuations are measured through intangibles such as intellectual property.
"For instance, Nielsen//NetRatings US data for October shows that 7am.com had a unique audience almost twice that of Associated Press in the US market (950,000 against 530,000). It also exceeded AP in number of page views at 4.3 million versus 3.7 million. Furthermore, 7am.com's reach to young people was 1.6% compared with AP's reach of 0.6%. This kind of information is obviously invaluable to 7am.com."
"We believe our success is, at least in part, due to an intimate understanding of the Internet as a technology and a culture," said John Ferguson. "ACNielsen eRatings.com is going to provide some sorely needed hard and comparative measurement of behavior within that culture."
"To give an idea of our growth rate, we're planning to double our staff within the next four months and open an office in San Franciso. 7am.com is now extending its operations and boosting the pace of its growth. We have set very high targets and are meeting these month by month. 7am.com is well positioned to be 'the news syndication service' in the year 2000".