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Chartbeat sets out to improve native advertising with new metrics suite

New York ad tech start­up Chart­beat is unveil­ing a new prod­uct to add to its real-time ana­lyt­ics arse­nal, a devel­op­ment which should per­suade even the most skep­ti­cal prod­uct man­ag­er that it’s seri­ous about its aim to improve the met­rics for gaug­ing how well native adver­tis­ing is doing.

Chart­beat CEO Tony Haile believes that a major rea­son why native adver­tis­ing has so far failed to live up to its billing as “this great new hope for pub­lish­ing” can be stat­ed in six words: “So much of native is bad.”

Beyond impres­sions

This is where it gets inter­est­ing for tech prod­uct man­agers: Haile believes that much of that bad­ness is down to poor mea­sure­ment. Typ­i­cal­ly, adver­tis­ers will only see how many impres­sions their spon­sored con­tent has received on a publisher’s web­site, and maybe how many times a post has been shared on social media. But count­ing eye­balls tells adver­tis­ers noth­ing about how good the con­tent was.

So the new Paid Con­tent ser­vice sets out to change all that, and prod­uct man­agers pre­sid­ing over it will be nego­ti­at­ing with both adver­tis­ers and pub­lish­ers, because both are like­ly to want to use it. With easy-on-the-eye graph­ics, it shows not only the stan­dard eye­ball count but how many vis­i­tors actu­al­ly fin­ished the piece and how long they spent engag­ing with it.

Final­ly, the piece is giv­en a score rang­ing from 0–100 to show how well it’s per­formed against the oth­er con­tent on the site (the score is made up of fac­tors such as engage­ment time, social media shar­ing and traf­fic). It even lets users see the sources of the traf­fic and which key influ­encers have tweet­ed about the content.

See­ing what works

As Haile puts it:

“We start­ed with native adver­tis­ing because that’s where the need is the most acute — it’s where there’s the most heat and the least light. We’re try­ing to real­ly under­stand what’s work­ing and what’s not. Right now it’s very, very dif­fi­cult to tell the dif­fer­ence between good native adver­tis­ing and bad native adver­tis­ing; we want to help peo­ple cre­at­ing good con­tent, and give them good met­rics so they can show that it works.”

Haile also revealed that the com­pa­ny has recent­ly raised a fur­ther $3 mil­lion in Series B fund­ing, with a full Series C sched­uled for lat­er in the year.

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