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Five MIT Sloan companies to watch (continued)

Visible MeasuresVisible Measures - Brian Chin.
MBA '06

Visible Measures, Advertising Reinvented

In response to the soaring growth of the Internet video market, Visible Measures—a Boston-based company founded in 2005 by Brian Shin, MBA '06—allows Internet video publishers and advertisers to track the consumption of their content in a number of new and meaningful ways. Using as a guide the gross rating point system already familiar to television and radio advertisers, Shin developed a series of new metrics designed specifically to account for the much more social and data-rich landscape of the online world.

Traditionally, Shin says, an advertisement was rated according to reach—a measure of how many people you were able to touch with your message, multiplied by the frequency with which you were able to do so. Extending this formula, Visible Measures tracks video content according to what they call true reach, a metric that measures the total audience that has been exposed to an online video campaign. “The idea is that we measure the consumption of both paid and social video content—all the clips that are related to a particular ad/film campaign. We do this across 150-plus video-sharing sites like YouTube, MySpace, DailyMotion, and Metacafe, measuring all the clips related to a campaign across 150-plus video-sharing sites.”

Another set of metrics, known as engagement metrics, measures the intensity of each user's experience while viewing a given video: Did they stop midway through? Did they rewind at a certain point? Did they watch it again—and, if so, how many times? Finally, a set of advocacy metrics measures the very important social aspects of the Internet, monitoring whether a user forwarded a given video to a friend, linked to it from the website, or posted it on Twitter.

This innovative approach has made Visible Measures an important resource for advertisers. Ever since Shin, with the help of Professor Ed Roberts, raised his first round of angel funding while still a student at MIT Sloan, the company has grown as quickly as the world of online video itself.

“I would go so far as to say that MIT Sloan is the reason this company got off the ground. And I say that with total gratitude and humility because MIT really did everything for me. Before coming to MIT Sloan, I had been an entrepreneur with some small successes. But after coming to MIT Sloan, I believed there was a platform to dream bigger—it wasn't impossible for a guy like me who has no experience in advertising to start a company that could potentially be a part of reinventing the way that advertising works.”

Having just raised $10 million in Series C funding, Visible Measures is working very closely with companies such as YouTube, MTV, MySpace, and Sony. And they are looking forward to establishing Visible Measures as an important economic force in the Boston area, just around the corner from the company's birthplace.