The Route service is an audience measurement system for the Out Of Home advertising industry in Great Britain. It includes all major Out Of Home Media: roadside posters, buses, trains, taxis, airports and indoor media (shopping malls).
Who is the client?
The client is Route which is the industry body or ‘JIC’ that is responsible for Out Of Home audience measurement in Great Britain. Route members include both outdoor contractors and the IPA (representing agencies).
There are three components to an outdoor audience measurement study: a travel survey, independent count data to calibrate the survey’s findings and a visibility adjustment that takes into account the likelihood to see (as opposed to ‘opportunity to see’) out of home media.
- The centrepiece of the Route research is a travel survey that measures the journeys made by respondents. Participants are recruited to carry a GPS meter that precisely tracks their movements over a nine day period. The sample comprises 10,000 interviews in the first year and 5,000 in subsequent years. Quotas are set by age, sex, working status and car ownership.
Demographic data and information relating to the respondent’s travel behaviour are obtained at the recruitment stage. Consumption of other media is collected by means of a self-completion questionnaire. The questionnaire has been designed with a view to integrating the data with TGI, other media currencies and the IPA’s Touchpoints survey. An integrated cover and frequency system for out of home media will also be derived.
There is extensive third party data available from transport operators about the characteristics of passengers. This can be combined with data from the travel survey by means of modelling. Original research will be carried out in malls and other indoor environments in order to provide a demographic profile for these audiences.
- Department for Transport road traffic counts provide an independent source of traffic information for roadside media. Passenger count data provided by public transport operators and footfall data from mall operators or companies that supply this type of information serve the same purpose for non-roadside media. Modelling is used to combine data from the travel survey with count data.
- The Route visibility system is based on laboratory tests using eye tracking where participants move through simulated urban environments. This is used to obtain a probability that they will look at different types of advertising. This research is being undertaken by Route in conjunction with Birkbeck College, London and is not part of the Ipsos contract. The research is being extended to include new formats, in particular digital media.