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A - F

ACCELEROMETER – An electronic device that helps us to understand movement by measuring vibrations (relative accelerations). The vibration of a car is very different to that of a train or a bus. It has many applications, including the study of live volcanoes.

ALGORITHM - A set of mathematical instructions that combine to produce a specific outcome. Here, the outcome is reach and frequency for outdoor sites. The Route algorithm is unique, specific to the medium.

BARB AREA - The 12 large segments of the country used in media planning. These are defined by where TV transmitters are. The whole country is covered.

CONE OF VISION - The field of view for an individual. Also known as the area of sight. It extends from the subject as a 120° cone.

CONURBATION – A population centre. There are twenty-four Route conurbations. We use the government’s definition to determine their limits. The conurbations do not cover the whole country, but instead cover the largest city areas.

COVER (COVERAGE) - The proportion of a target group who see one or more frames in an outdoor campaign (creating an IMPACT), in a defined period. Expressed as a percentage.

CURRENCY – Route data is known as a currency. There is a currency for each advertising medium (eg. BARB for television). By creating a common measure of all formats equally, and giving a specific value to each, media space may be planned, traded, evaluated and reported based on the currency.

DEPARTMENT FOR TRANSPORT (DfT) – The government department responsible for traffic, transport, congestion and so on. The DfT run the National Travel Survey which is included in some of Route’s work.

DIGITAL – Advertising frames that have a digital screen, displaying moving or rotating images.

ENVIRONMENT – Shorthand for the specific type of location where advertising frames are placed. For example, RAIL indicates displays in rail stations and on trains, and RETAIL includes frames inside retail centres and pedestrian areas, among others.

EYE-TRACKING – The Department of Psychology at Birkbeck College, University of London, has undertaken experiments to discover typical eye movement patterns in outdoor spaces. From a variety of studies we know the mathematical rule by which to calculate realistic audience numbers.

FACE – An individual advertising image. One face may make up part of a scrolling billboard, or series of images on a digital frame.

FACTOR – A mathematical rule that is applied to an equation.

FIELDWORK – The part of our research work which is the on-the-ground data capture: interviews with participants, and the time spent carrying a GPS device.

FRAME – The physical housing of an advertising display. A frame may show a single static image, a series of images with a scrolling mechanism, or it may have a digital screen capable of exhibiting many individual adverts. Each separate advertising image is called a FACE.

FREQUENCY – The average number of times that a given target audience see one or more frames in an outdoor campaign (creating an IMPACT), in a defined period.

G - P

GPS – Global Positioning System. The satellite navigation system that provides precise location information for electronic devices, such as military missile guidance systems.

GRP – Gross Rating Point. A rating point is one percent of the potential audience. GRPs measure the total of all rating points during a campaign. It is the percentage of the target audience reached times the frequency they see it.

HERE – The mapping specialist, which provides data that allows Route to create a road and pathway network on which to base its models. Data from HERE is often used in satnav systems. 

IPSOS MEDIACT – The division of the market research company Ipsos MORI that provides media measurement services. The company delivers many similar projects, including the RAJAR and NRS currencies.

IMPACT – One individual, seeing one advert, once. This is a mathematical rule applied in audience calculations. The definition of a Route IMPACT uses LIKELIHOOD TO SEE (LTS), not OPPORTUNITY TO SEE (OTS). In other words, it is adjusted for VISIBILITY.

JIC - Joint Industry Committee. A cross-industry body, typically governed equally by buyers and sellers of the medium, that undertakes research for that medium. Route is a JIC.

LIKELIHOOD-TO-SEE – Our measure of audiences is a net estimation, incorporating eye-tracking studies to give a more realistic likelihood-to-see factor, rather than the opportunity to see (OTS) used by other media. See EYE-TRACKING.

LOCAL AUTHORITY – County or town authorities; councils. Some councils carry out traffic research that is relevant to Route’s study.

MAXIMUM VISIBILITY DISTANCE – Derived from eye-tracking experiments, Route has defined the distance from which posters can be seen. This varies, and is dependent on the dimension of the frame. A larger frame will have a longer visibility distance.

MGE DATA – Based in Prague, MGE Data is a specialist in geographic information systems and geo-marketing technology data. MGE Data provides the MobiTest GPS meters for Route, and undertakes modelling work for parts of the Route study.

MOTORWAY SERVICE AREA (MSA) – Frames that are situated in the car parks or slip roads of motorway services.

NETWORK RAIL – The company which owns and manages the rail infrastructure in Britain. Route sources passenger count data from Network Rail.

OBSERVATION – A technique used in market research. For Route, Ipsos MediaCT has observed the behaviour of people in interior spaces such as airports. A chosen group of people is observed as they move in the space, and a FACTOR for their likelihood to visit a specific location is produced.

OFFSET – In relation to ‘straight ahead’ the OFFSET is the angle away from this path at which the poster is located. The OFFSET is an important factor in calculating the visibility of the frame.

PASSIVE – Describes research fieldwork that requires minimal input from the participant. At a practical level the data is simple to process and subject to fewer input errors than in active or survey-based methods.

PMRS (PEDESTRIAN MARKET RESEARCH SERVICES) – A research company that specialises in the collection and supply of pedestrian footfall information.

Q - Z

REACH – The estimated number of people that see an advertising campaign (creating an IMPACT), in a defined period.

REACH AND FREQUENCY – The estimated number of people that see an advertising campaign, and the average number of times they see it, in a defined period.

RECALL – In market research, a respondent may be asked to remember the advertising they have seen. This is known as recall. 

RESPONDENT – A respondent is a participant in a research study. For Route, respondents are selected based on their location, and fulfill a specific demographic requirement.

SHOPPING CENTRE INTERIOR – Malls, or other types of interior shopping spaces, inside buildings.

SHOPPING CENTRE EXTERIOR – Open-air shopping spaces, such as town centre pedestrianised streets or walkways around malls.

SUPERMARKET EXTERIOR – Inventory located in exterior spaces around supermarkets, typically in car parks.

TOWN – Route has divided the whole country into more than 1,600 areas. These are often actual towns, but in rural areas there may in fact be more than one small town in the area. The purpose is to split the country into logical and manageable chunks. The 1,600 areas cover 100% of the country with no gaps.

TRAFFIC – Volumes of people moving, whether on foot or in vehicles.

TRAFFIC INTENSITY MODEL – A complex mathematical model that incorporates all of our findings about traffic, vehicular and pedestrian. We have created a map for the entire country that records every road, pathway and corridor along which people travel. The model ascribes volumes of people-flows to each segment of this map. Known affectionately as TIM.

TRANSPORT FOR LONDON (TfL) – The organisation responsible for London’s transport. TfL supplies count (passenger) data for the Route model.

TRIP STAGE – A trip stage is not a full journey, but a segment of Route GPS data; or, in other words, a ‘mode of transport travel segment’. One journey can be formed by two or more trip stages by different modes.


VISIBILITY – The area of research that, using eye-tracking methods, produces data on the probability that an advert is visible to the viewer.

VISIBILITY AREA – The area around a frame in which it can be seen. It incorporates the maximum visibility distance of the frame, and the angle that Route has defined to mark its catchment area (120°).

Reach over a day

Reach over a day

Browse charts that show the changing reach for a typical day, in twelve environments View charts