Why you should not rely on “Unique users” as campaign measurement

Knowing how many people are reached by an ad is the foundation of all types of marketing. So far, metrics like ‘Unique users’ have been used, representing an amount of unique devices or cookies rather than the number of individuals. This falls short of providing a complete picture of the campaign’s effectiveness.

With an increased digital fragmentation and the phase-out of third-party cookies, Unique users has become a less reliable metric. Let’s take a look at two examples:

  1. Around 30 million Unique users are generated in Schibsted’s universe in a month — a significantly higher amount than both the Swedish population and Schibsted’s actual media reach.
  2. Another example is where two campaigns both estimate to reach 5 million Unique users, but the first campaign reaches only 3 million people in reality, and the other reaches 4 million. It varies from case to case, and reliable estimates cannot be made.

Schibsted Reach – preparing for the Future

In September, Schibsted launched a new and entirely unique measurement method – Schibsted Reach. The method involves measuring the number of people reached by a digital ad through two different groups on our sites; logged-in and non-logged in users. Together, this provides a good overview of the campaign’s effectiveness.

Logged in reach:

On Schibsted’s platforms, we have 2.3 million active users per week, accounting for approximately 35% of our total usage. On these users, we have very good insights. We know, among other things, how often they visit us and which sites they visit, regardless of whether they are on a computer, mobile, Aftonbladet, Blocket, or SvD.

Non-logged in reach:

The other group that makes Schibsted Reach so comprehensive is what we call “non-logged in users.” Here, we apply Norstat’s panel data and other statistical calculations of user behavior.

The method also allows us to clearly see if two views are one person on two sites or two people on two sites. In other words, we make sure not to count a person multiple times and eliminate potential overlap.

Taking the next step

Due to the market situation, it’s now that you as an advertiser should review your way of measuring campaigns and ask yourself; am I getting the full picture of my advertising and its effectiveness?

Examine your processes, how you currently measure and analyze your campaign effectiveness, what are your possibilities? Consider how you can shift from a campaign reporting based on Unique users to reporting based on reach in terms of individuals.

If you’re already a customer at Schibsted, you’re close to accurate ad measurement. Book your next campaign in Admarket, and after completing the campaign, you will receive an automatically generated campaign report with Schibsted Reach directly in the platform.

If you are not a customer, you can contact us for more information here!