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TiVo offers free insight into TV ad effectiveness

The DVR service launches Ad Scorecard, which lets anyone find out how effective different companies are at capturing the attention of TiVo users.

If you ever wanted to know how well a particular company's commercial campaigns are performing in the increasingly DVR'd world, TiVo has the solution for you.

The company announced the launch of a free tool today, called Ad Scorecard, that provides insight into how well companies are advertising their brands on television. The platform is designed to provide brand managers and marketing executives with information on whether or not TiVo users are actually watching their commercials and how effective those ads are at capturing user attention.

"TiVo wants to make it easy for all marketers to begin incorporating better metrics into their decision-making processes--and we've decided this easy-to-use Web tool is a great way to help people understand more broadly the value of our data," TiVo vice president for advertising and research sale said in a statement.

TiVo's data could be a boon for marketers. The company currently offers a service to marketers called, StopWatch, which collects anonymous data from customers to see which commercials users are quickly fast-forwarding and which they're actually watching. TiVo says that it collects that data down to the second, making it one of the more accurate representations of user activity for marketers, since the company claims, "40 percent of TV homes have a DVR today."

Apple is more effectively advertising its brand on TV than Microsoft or Verizon.
Apple is more effectively advertising its brand on TV than Microsoft or Verizon. Screenshot by Don Reisinger/CNET

Ad Scorecard allows users to input up to three advertisers into the comparison pane to see how well they've all fared. Users can also choose between four weeks, eight weeks, or twelve weeks of data analysis. All the brands are compared based on their "commercial retention index" to see which ads were most successful at staying with viewers. The tool also lets users see how well brands fared on both broadcast and cable networks or on one or the other.

I quickly took the tool for a spin and compared ad effectiveness between Apple, Microsoft, and Verizon over the past twelve weeks. According to TiVo, Apple performed most effectively at appealing to viewers over that period.