In the US, Nielsen has announced the indefinite suspension of its P.R.I.S.M. initiative, which it set up with the In-Store Marketing Institute in 2006. P.R.I.S.M. aimed to establish a common industry metric to measure audiences and gauge the effectiveness of in-store marketing.
The news comes less than a month after retail giant Wal-mart pulled out
of the P.R.I.S.M. program, citing its corporate ban on sharing its data with other market research firms as the reason.
In a statement, Nielsen blamed the nation’s serious economic state, saying that along with its clients, it has decided this is ‘not the right environment’ to launch a national syndicated service. It is believed that obtaining P.R.I.S.M. (Pioneering Research for an In-Store Metric) data can cost up to seven figures for larger consortium members.
Peter Hoyt, Executive Director of the In-Store Marketing Institute, said of the suspension: ‘I know it was very expensive to do the constant, continuous audits in the field. I think the cost would have come down over time, but they ran out of time to do that because so many of the original supporters are having to cut their budgets. It's a shame. We thought it had a lot of promise.’
In the absence of P.R.I.S.M., Nielsen says it will work with clients interested in exploring other ways to address their shopper marketing needs on a custom basis until a syndicated service is financially viable.
Mike Hess, Director - Global Research and Consumer Insights for Omnicom Group's OMD, has said he believes it will be difficult to restart the project once it has been shut down.
Nielsen has called time on a number of other pilots and partnerships in the last 12 months, beginning with its Arbitron JV Project Apollo
last February, and including social networking site Hey! Nielsen
and the OOH television viewing service
on which it worked with IMMI – in the case of the last of these, it also blamed the economic downturn for making an otherwise workable system unviable.
Web sites: www.nielsen.com