Helping our Clients Understand Consumer Behavior Through Homescan Premium

Ryan is a Data Science Manager based in Chicago. Since joining Nielsen, Ryan has been able to apply his passion for measurement to help build Homescan Premium, a project that has played a part in the Nielsen Total Consumer initiative.   

Since as young as I could play, I’ve been obsessed with numbers and with their ability to quantify events. Many people wanted to be astronauts, doctors, or firefighters, but I wanted to be a mathematician. As early as high school, I focused this passion on statistics because I loved to be able to measure the seemingly unmeasurable. I remember learning about the theory behind the measurement of ecological populations and being fascinated by the given approaches.

That’s why I love working at Nielsen. Since joining, I’ve been able to apply my passion for measurement to help build Homescan Premium, which combines retailer loyalty card data with data from our traditional Homescan panel through the data fusion. This gives us a sample of more than 1 million households, which ultimately provides our clients with a more granular analyses. Nielsen uses data fusion immensely for audience measurement, especially in our Nielsen Total Audience solution. This project serves as a stepping stone into Nielsen’s Total Consumer initiative.

With Nielsen Total Consumer, clients will be able to measure what the consumer purchases everywhere: online and offline, in-store and out-of-home. Knowing that Homescan Premium is a part, and a start, of this larger picture is exciting. This initiative will help our clients understand the consumer’s behavior, so they can know how best to reach their potential customers. It will also let retailers know with what products to stock on their shelves and will inform manufacturers about who their customers are and where they typically purchase products. Knowing that two products are consumed similarly can even let retailers know where to stock different products. These insights are why clients come to Nielsen.

Personally, I need to believe in the company and the product that I am developing. I have left many companies in less than two years because I did not believe in what they do or the product I was working on. I am still at Nielsen after four years because I believe that Homescan Premium and the Nielsen Total Consumer initiative are the best tools to differentiate ourselves in the marketplace.

Homescan Premium is not the only project that I have worked on, but it was my first child at Nielsen.  Through this project, I have become a people leader, which I never thought I would be five years ago. I started out as an analyst, working with sampling theory and statistical analysis software (SAS) to develop the sampling methodology. Since then, I’ve assumed more responsibilities, such as additional development, Homescan Premium socialization, and working with interns and Emerging Leader Associates. Through these activities, I have gone outside of my comfort zone on many occasions, which has helped me grow into the people leader that I am today. Nielsen has given me these opportunities and it has made a difference in my life.