A Designated Market Area (DMA) is a geographic region in the United States that is defined by the Nielsen Media Research company. The purpose of a DMA is to measure and track television viewing habits in a particular area, with the goal of providing local broadcasters and advertisers with more accurate information about their audience.
A DMA is typically centered around a major city or urban area, and includes the surrounding counties and smaller towns that receive their local television programming from stations located in the designated city. The boundaries of a DMA are determined by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which uses data from Nielsen to create and revise the areas.
There are currently 210 DMAs in the United States, and they are ranked based on the number of households in each area that have television sets. The largest DMAs include New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Dallas-Fort Worth.
DMAs are important for television broadcasters and advertisers because they provide a way to measure the size and demographics of the audience for a particular program or commercial. This information can be used to make decisions about programming, advertising rates, and other aspects of the television industry.