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Arbitron Accelerates Plans to Increase Cell-Only Sampling

18–34 demo is noted

An increasing number of people now live in households that don’t have a land-line telephone, so Arbitron is moving up its plans to increase diary sampling of such consumers.

“Arbitron is committed to reflecting the increasing trend of CPO households across the U.S., which is why we’ve moved up the date to increase the number of these households in our samples,” stated the research company’s Chief Marketing Office and EVP Alton Adams.

The company this week announced it will accelerate the planned increase in its diary market cell-phone-only (CPO) household sample target. It now plans to raise the proportion of its diary sample from CPO households to an average of 15 percent across diary markets by spring.

“When implemented, the planned increase in cell-phone-only household sampling will represent an increase of 50 percent from the year-end 2009 sample target, which is equal to an average of 10 percent,” the company said. “Previously, Arbitron had announced that this increase was scheduled for completion by year-end 2010.”

CPO sampling was in place in all 268 diary markets as of this fall’s survey. “The company completed the roll-out of cell-phone-only sampling in all 50 states in fall 2009, and we are delivering improved sample performance in those markets,” Adams stated.

The company noted that people in CPO households are more likely to be age 18–34. “While the CPO sample target was an average of 10 percent of the total (12+) diary sample in Spring 2009 across all markets, it represented approximately 28 percent of the 18–34 in-tab sample.” With the planned increase this spring, the percent of 18–34 sample represented by CPO households should be closer to 40 percent, it stated.

Portable People Meter markets include cell-only households in their rating panels; 15 percent of PPM panels are CPO households and Arbitron aims to raise that target in PPM markets to 20 percent by the end of next year.