Why has NRS developed PADD?
NRS was led by its stakeholders (newsbrands – NPA, magazines – PPA and advertising agencies – IPA) who were keen for the Survey to reflect the growth of newsbrands and magazine brands through non-print platforms, principally websites.

Various possible solutions were assessed, and the favoured approach was a partnership with an established provider of online audience data. The advantages of this are that there is no disruption to the NRS print currency, and it avoids the expense (and potential confusion) of creating a new online currency.

Why was comScore chosen as the data partner?
In line with UKOM’s appointment of comScore as its supplier of website audience estimates with effect from January 2013, NRS PADD is now fusing to comScore website audience data, rather than the Nielsen estimates used for the first three releases of NRS PADD in 2012.  The NRS Board’s view was that this change was appropriate to align with UKOM and ensure NRS PADD was based on the website estimates in most common usage.

There are often considerable differences between the website estimates produced by comScore and Nielsen, which make it inappropriate to compare the two.  This is because there are differences in the methodology and definitions used by each company. 

Nielsen and comScore use different methodologies to combine panel and site-centric data in order to create their “hybrid” estimates.
Whether a site has appropriate tags may make a difference to the measure: within comScore there may be differences according to whether a website uses the unified methodology (panel + tag data) or panel-only.
Panel composition
comScore and Nielsen use different techniques to recruit panellists.

The NRS PADD released on 18 March 2013, and all subsequent PADD releases for the foreseeable future, use website estimates from comScore and, for the reasons listed above, should not be compared with previous releases of NRS PADD based on Nielsen data.

However, by fusing with comScore for the previous NRS PADD release (January – December 2012 & comScore November 2012) it allows a 2012 comparison point for 2013 subsequent quarterly releases and beyond.

What is data fusion?
Data fusion is a sophisticated technique for integrating two independent datasets while maintaining the integrity of both. Data fusion is widely used in media research throughout the world, and has benefitted the growth of multi-media planning tools.

In this case, comScore participants are matched with NRS participants on the basis of shared characteristics (for example demographics and internet behaviour). The comScore data are then transferred to the NRS data, creating a third dataset: NRS PADD.

The fusion is conducted by RSMB, which is a global leader in this field.

What does PADD provide?
NRS PADD provides in a single base print readership data, website audience data and all the NRS demographic and classification data. It allows users to, amongst other things, see the unduplicated reach of print publications and websites, the incremental reach provided by websites, the websites that readers of print titles visit and vice versa, and the comparative audience profiles of print titles and websites.

In addition to monthly reach, NRS PADD will show weekly and daily reach for websites. It will also show page views and dwell time, the latter providing a useful adjunct to the NRS Time Spent Reading data for print.

The data bureaux have developed multi-media Reach & Frequency tools for NRS PADD which allows users to combine print and website media schedules and see the combined reach of both.

Who has access to PADD data?
NRS subscribers who are also subscribers to comScore will have automatic access to PADD at no additional cost. NRS subscribers who are not subscribers to comScore and who wish to subscribe to PADD should contact NRS.
How can websites be added to PADD?
Publishers who are members of either the NPA or the PPA and who wish to have their website included in NRS PADD should in the first instance approach the relevant association.

All titles in the print survey that have had readership estimates published for at least 12 months and have affiliated websites can be included in PADD. Publisher-owned websites that do not have an affiliated print title can also be included.

In order for a publisher website to be included in PADD it must:

  • Be measured by comScore
  • Be a standalone domain with its own URL – it cannot be a sub-section of another domain
  • Achieve a minimum comScore monthly sample size of 40

The list of titles and websites in PADD is reviewed each quarter by the NRS Technical Committee, with additions and deletions normally made in January, April, July and October.

Is PADD website data the same as comScore data?
It was a criterion of the fusion that it preserved as closely as possible the original comScore data. However, users will notice some differences. Firstly, the NRS universe (Great Britain age 15+) is different to the comScore universe (United Kingdom age 6+). Secondly, while a number of critical demographic variables were included in the fusion, there may be variances between NRS PADD and UKOM data for certain audiences.
Which websites are included in PADD?
The fusion includes all domains linked to NRS print titles, either individual domains or portals. What is published is dependent on minimum sample sizes: for publisher websites, NRS has agreed a minimum sample size of 40, the minimum adopted by comScore. This means that not all publisher websites will necessarily be published, and there will be some variance in the published list from one release to the next.

In addition to publisher websites, NRS PADD also includes other websites with a sample of 750 or more. This allows users to identify the general websites visited by readers of print titles and publisher websites.

What are the minimum sample sizes?
The minimum sample size for publication of 40 respondents for websites is less than the 175 minimum for print titles (or 225 in the case of titles on the 24-month base) with which NRS users are familiar. Users of NRS PADD should therefore exercise caution when analysing websites, particularly smaller websites, and for audiences other than All Adults. It should also be borne in mind that the publication minimum of 40 is based on the monthly website audience, and the sample sizes for weekly and more especially daily audiences are in a number of cases too small to be reliable.
How does PADD compare with other data sources?
The NRS PADD data for websites is the audience data provided by comScore. What is unique about NRS PADD is that it calculates the duplication between print and online audiences, and by extension net reach, and this is the key finding of the fusion.  There is no external benchmark against which net reach can be measured, but diagnostic testing suggests that overall the fusion is an efficient means of retaining the actual duplications, though erring towards an underestimation of duplication and therefore an overestimation of net reach. Notwithstanding the fact that data fusion can never perfectly capture the relationship between print titles and websites, NRS is assured that the NRS PADD data are a robust and dependable source for planning across print and website properties.
What is the difference between PADD and ABC?
PADD combines the readership estimates of NRS (the number and type of people reading given newsbrands and magazine titles) with the comScore estimates of audiences to websites (which is again the number and type of people visiting given websites). Both NRS and comScore data collection methodologies are people-centric.

ABC is a very set of different metrics. For printed publications it is the audited number of copies in circulation: it says nothing about the number and type of people of people reading those publications. For websites ABC is reporting analytics for individual websites to an agreed industry standard: these are browser data collected from devices rather than people, so again it is not possible to say how many people have visited a website and the type of people they are.