Volume of Coverage

Why Measure Volume of Coverage?

This section explains traditional forms of the media, notably television and the press.  Globally, more than 85 countries have official audience measurement systems. These service the local TV and advertising industries in each country. Many rights holders incorporate a requirement into their TV contracts that expect rights holding broadcasters to deliver confirmation of broadcast and if applicable or available, TV audience data.  Such data might be:

  • Cumulative audience, which combines individual programme audiences together. It does not differentiate unique viewers. For example, if there were four broadcasts with viewing figures of (say) 2m, 1.5m, 1m and 2.5m, then the cumulative audience would be 7m.  This does not necessarily mean that 7m different people watched an event-related broadcast.
  • Peak audience during a particular programme.  If there are different programmes covering an event the peak audiences across each programme can be used to infer an 'at least' position for the unique number of viewers in the absence of more detailed information from the broadcaster.  For example, if there were four broadcasts with peak viewing of 2m, 1.5m, 1m and 2.5m then a reasonable assumption in the absence of more detailed data would be that at least 2.5m different people watched the event programming. This is a better measure than cumulative audience.
  • Unique audience (or actual reach) measures the number of different individuals watching live or delayed broadcast coverage.  Reach de-duplicates the audience and counts each person as viewing a series of event programmes only once, as opposed to adding together the audience across many programmes or alternatively taking an average audience.  For a multi-day sports event, reach will capture any viewer that watches any event broadcast, but only measure them once (i.e. unique viewers).  Hence, if John watched two broadcasts of an event and Jim three broadcasts they would be counted once each, making the reach two.

The volume of coverage provides a measure of an event's popularity and is particularly important to local organising committees and stakeholders with an interest in promoting a host area, nationally or internationally. While AVE measures of what on-screen exposure would have cost to purchase commercially are often commissioned by events with larger budgets, those with smaller budgets may be more pragmatic and report the number of unique viewers or 'reach' as an indication of the popularity of their event.

Download - Volume of Coverage Toolkit (.pdf)

Basic Measures

Basic Volume of Coverage measures the traditional forms of media.

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Intermediate Measures

Measures for the dedicated online event coverage

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