Summary of July 2016 U.S. Board Actions

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The following are highlights of the actions taken by the Alliance for Audited Media board of directors at its meeting held July 21-22. Updates to AAM’s bylaws and rules are posted on AAM’s website following each board meeting.


Key Developments

Board Reviews Status of New AAM Products that Provide Valid and Visible Metrics to Marketplace

The board reviewed the status of AAM’s suite of new products that were launched in the spring to help premium publishers showcase the reach of their brands across platforms and give media buyers more access to independently verified information. Currently AAM has more than 50 active participants in its Site Certifier and Ad Block Gauge programs. Additionally, AAM’s new Brand View interface is available to all U.S. and Canadian business and farm publications. Since Brand View’s launch, nearly 60 clients have created custom profiles that will soon be activated in AAM’s Media Intelligence Center. Brand View will be open to all U.S. and Canadian consumer magazines and U.S. newspapers this fall. Because Canadian newspapers are transitioning to quarterly reporting, they will be able to activate their Brand View profiles with the release of their Q1 2017 data.


AAM and CAC Form New Certified Audit of Circulations (CAC) Media Committee

AAM and CAC established a new media committee to bring recommendations and concerns from CAC clients to the AAM board of directors for consideration. The committee met for the first time at the AAM board meeting. The roster includes representatives from the AAM and CAC board of directors:

  • Tom Cassidy, vice president marketing production and operations, JCPenny Co. (AAM director)
  • Kathy Heatley, vice president local publishing activation director, Starcom Mediavest Group (CAC and AAM director)
  • Steve Mueller, president, NSA Media, OAG and Wahlstrom (AAM director)
  • Steve Pope, publisher, Tuscon Local Media, Explorer/Tucson Weekly (CAC and AAM director)
  • Barry Schiro, president, CBA Industries, Inc. (CAC and AAM director)

As part of this new AAM-CAC collaboration, all CAC representatives from the committee now participate in AAM board meetings as well. Since 2012 when AAM and CAC joined forces, the organizations have worked to provide credible, transparent data to U.S. newspaper publishers and media buyers. The two organizations have aligned newspaper reporting into one unified, searchable and information-rich Media Intelligence Center that’s regularly accessed by more than 6,000 active users. Together AAM and CAC have grown a vast data network that is accessed nearly 5 million times annually.


Board Upholds Cost-Efficient, Streamlined and More Responsive Procedures

Over the last two years the AAM board has implemented a number of changes to streamline its procedures to be more responsive and cost efficient. One of the primary savings is that the board has moved from meeting in person three times per year to two, with multiple interim conference call meetings throughout the year. The board is expected to reconvene via teleconference this fall.


AAM New Directors and Resignations

The board accepted the resignation of Evan Ray, formerly of Gannett Publishing, who represented U.S. newspapers since 2009 and recently retired. The board also elected Jerry Hill, Vice President Strategic Segments and Marketing Operations, Gannett Publishing, to represent U.S. newspapers.


Business Publications

New Notification Established in the Media Intelligence Center to Encourage Audit Timeliness

At its spring meeting, the Business Publication Industry Committee (BPIC) discussed how it can help encourage publishers to comply with AAM’s audit requests so AAM can release audits into the marketplace within an optimal time period. Current rules allow AAM to hold a publisher’s statement if the publication’s audit is not completed within six months of the audit period-end date and identify audit delays in AAM’s Analyzer tools within the Media Intelligence Center if the audit is not completed within a year.

The board recommended that AAM identify clients with audits that have not been completed within a year as “not current” on the Media Intelligence Center homepage and the board be notified of the audit delays.


Consumer Magazines

Magazine Committee to Consider Consumer Engagement for Sponsored Digital Issues

Over the last few months AAM’s Magazine Committee has focused on topics related to digital magazines, including consumer engagement with digital issues. In light of the board’s recent decision to require “unique opens” for U.S. publishers reporting unlimited access programs such as Texture, the committee agreed to discuss other instances of indirect consumer payment for digital issues at its upcoming fall meeting.

At that time the committee will consider making unique opens a requirement for programs such as “sponsored digital issues” beginning with July 2017 issues. Before the fall meeting, the Magazine Committee recommends magazine publishers who report sponsored digital issues start working with their vendors to make sure their records can accommodate consumer access, are up to date and able to be audited by AAM.



AAM and NAA Form New Executive Committee

The AAM board and the Newspaper Association of America board recently formed a new executive committee to more closely align AAM and NAA strategies, provide an established forum for industry discussion, and facilitate important initiatives that help newspapers leverage their multimedia brands in today’s changing media market. The group plans to meet regularly and share information about its upcoming plans this fall.