The standard, issued last week by the MRC, is open for public comment now and expected to be final by the fall. It's sweeping in scope, including providers of marketing mix modeling, multi-touch attribution and other brand or sales lift analyses.
Companies that could ultimately seek accreditation range from boutique one- or two-person firms to giant companies such as Nielsen and media companies that provide their own return-on-investment measures, such as Meta and Google, both of which were part of the working group.
Media branches of most of the agency holding companies, many of which also offer their own outcomes measurement tools that could be covered by the standard, were also on the working group, as were a handful of marketers, including Unilever and General Motors.
Still, analytics firms seem reluctant to raise their hands to say they will undergo what could be expensive and time-consuming audits. Nielsen and IRI, both big analytics firms that were part of the working group, declined to comment on whether they would seek accreditation. So did NCSolutions, which recently did a sales-impact analysis showing substantial sales lift for L’Oreal USA’s Maybelline on YouTube connected TV.
But one exception is TVSquared, a TV measurement firm focused on sales lift and other outcomes from TV buys, whose president Jo Kinsella said in an interview that her company, now part of Innovid, would likely seek MRC accreditation under the standard. Its parent Innovid last year already gained MRC accreditation for its impressions from its ad server business.
"Innovid has the served impression accreditation, and obviously TVSquared has an outcomes business," Kinsella said, so MRC accreditation "is something that we're looking to do."
Analytic Partners CEO Nancy Smith, however, said her company, which provides marketing mix analytics, multi-touch attribution and other outcomes measurement offerings covered by the draft standard, has no immediate plans to seek accreditation once it’s possible later this year.
“It’s yet to be seen whether or not we want to get accredited, just because it’s such a complex space,” Smith said, though she added: “I have a whole lot of respect for what the MRC is doing.”