Ads You Can Feel: Immersion, Magna, & IPG Media Lab Conduct In-Depth Analysis Of Haptic Tech In Video Ads

Click here to download a pdf version of the report.


IPG Media Lab, the creative technology arm of IPG Mediabrands, in partnership with Immersion Corp. today announced the results of a scientific media trial examining the impact of touch-enabled advertising created with haptic technology.

The resulting report, Ads You Can Feel: The New Mobile Experience, shares best practices, findings and insights on leveraging users’ senses, including sight, sound, motion, and now, touch, to create visceral mobile experiences. Over the course of the study, touch-enabled ads from a wide array of industry sectors, including automotive, hospitality and food & beverage were used to test consumers’ reaction to the experience.

The study of Immersion’s haptic technology, which enables users to feel touch effects on digital devices, found that adding touch to ads increases engagement and users’ sense of connection with a brand. Among the most notable findings is that haptic technology elicits a strong emotional response, particularly increasing levels of happiness and excitement.

In an ever-fragmented consumer landscape, brands are still determining how to best leverage technology and enable user interactivity. This served as the key element behind the launch of the media trial, which used seven distinctive ad types across two variant modes (skippable and non-skippable) to measure engagement and connectivity levels of haptic technology. Leading brands from a range of industry verticals, such as BMW, Royal Caribbean, Arby’s, and Truvia participated in this innovative media trial.

Key highlights from the study include:

• Haptic technology creates a more emotional experience, leading to consumers feeling more “excited” and “happy” during ad exposure.
• Engaging the sense of touch drives a 62% increase in feelings of connection with the advertised brand, which is often very difficult for marketers to do.
• Ultimately, adding haptics to video ads leads to a 50% lift in brand favorability, which equals 68% cost savings over the cost of increasing brand favorability using ads without haptic technology.
• Effectiveness of haptics spans across standard demographics, even driving purchase intent among the hard to influence (potential new customers). However, it’s important to note that early tech adopters are especially responsive to ads enabled with touch technology.

(Click to see the infographic in full size)


For more insights as well as the best practices for implementing haptics, click here to download the report

IPG Media Lab + Forbes Evaluate The Current State of Branded Content

Longer Form Branded Content Drives Purchase Consideration Among Millennials

Click here to download the full report.

According to our new quantitative study, “Storytelling: The Current State of Branded Content,” conducted in partnership with Forbes and S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, branded content’s impact is superior to display advertising in terms of recall, brand perception and intent/consideration.

This study included over 4,000 Forbes readers in the U.S. who were asked to view webpage content featuring brands such as SONY, Maserati and Boeing, followed by a post-exposure survey. The results demonstrated that:

  • Branded Content Works: Branded content is highly effective across the branding funnel and outperforms display ads. In addition to aided recall’s 59 percentage point increase, brand favorability was 7 percentage points higher and purchase consideration was 9 percentage points higher
  • Branded Content Holds Up Over Time: Despite the loss of novelty often seen with ad products across time, branded content was as effective, if not more so, in 2016 compared to results seen in the 2013 study.
  • Brand Interest Increases with Branded Content: Branded content may drive lasting interest in the brand. Consumers were 14 percentage points more likely to say they intend to seek out more information about the brand in the future.
  • Don’t Be Afraid to Mention Your Brand: ‘Higher Branding,’ defined as 2x the number of brand mentions, caused brands to be perceived as more educational by over 7 percentage points and performs better on mobile devices.
  • Longer Form Branded Content Drives Millennial Purchase Consideration: 18-34 year olds responded better to long articles, driving higher engagement consideration rates and aiding recall.
  • Branded Content Is Perceived Better: Consumers perceive branded content as being more consumer-centric because it is less about selling products and more about providing value to consumers.
  • Performance on Shows Value: Among those most engaged with the content, there was evidence that branded content performed particularly well on the Forbes website compared to brand sites.


Click here to download the full report.

IPG Lab - Forbes - Storytelling - The Current State of Branded Content Infographic
Click for full-size infographic and download.



IPG Media Lab + Thinknear Release Infographic – Harnessing the Power of Location

Location-based audience targeting superior in driving foot traffic, as IPG Media Lab & Thinknear media trial demonstrates better performance and lower cost across key mobile metrics.


In partnership with Thinknear, a leading location-based marketing platform, we are proud to present the results of a quantitative media trial examining how location based audience targeting (LBA) compares versus more traditional methods such as designated market area targeting (DMA) in mobile.

The scientific design included randomized control groups for each targeting method. We partnered with Office Depot Inc. to utilize mobile location data in identifying and targeting audiences based on behavioral location data.

The Lab also partnered with Placed, the market share leader in ad to in-store attribution representing the world’s largest opt-in location audience, to measure both brand impact as well as foot traffic.

The resulting infographic, Harnessing the Power of Location, details how LBA targeting reaches more specific and relevant audiences, drives both intent and actual visits to visit brick and mortar stores, and is significantly more cost-effective for marketers.

Key highlights from the resulting media trial findings include:

  • Consumers reached through LBA targeting were 10% more likely to fit into the brand’s key psychographic target.
  • LBA targeting was more effective at reaching new potential customers – those who purchase office supplies at competitive stores.
  • Generic DMA targeting had no measureable impact on reaction by key customer segments. However, those reached through LBA targeting showed significant lift (+116%) in intent to visit the store.
  • Location aware ads nearly doubled the impact in visitation intent. Using a location aware creative combined with LBA targeting led to the best result.
  • Only LBA targeting translated into actual foot traffic – a 29% lift in store visits, which is much higher compared to the industry norm of only 3.1% lift in store visits.
  • LBA targeting was also highly cost effective, with a $1.02 cost per incremental store visit compared to $6.39 for the general industry benchmark.


IPG LBA infographic_Harnessing The Power Of Location
Click on the infographic to view and download full-size image.


Click here to download the infographic in pdf.


IPG Media Lab + Twitter Release Beyond Completion Rates: How Social Video Works

Click here to download the full report

IPG Media Lab, the creative technology arm of IPG Mediabrands, partnering with Twitter today announced the results of a quantitative media trial examining the effectiveness of video within a social media feed. The resulting report, Beyond Completion Rates: How Social Video Works, details how in-feed, auto-play video measures up against similarly skippable pre-roll videos on premium, non-feed based sites. The study looked at the impact ad environments on brand metrics including recall, perception of relevance, and brand favorability.

Key Highlights Include:

  • The unique environment of social feeds, where content is personal and self-curated, has an impact on how video ads are perceived, specifically, as more “relevant to [consumers’] interests” and “less intrusive”
  • The same video ad is nearly twice as memorable in a social video feed compared to a similarly skippable video format on premium sites and is a stronger driver of brand favorability
  • Enticing consumers to watch the full video allows skippable pre-roll to perform much better than when skipped at some point after five seconds
  • Branding elements that appear directly above social videos before the “viewability timer” starts ticking allow for strong branding at low levels of “time in view” for the video itself
  • Strong evidence was found that advertisers should be adapting ads for feed environments. For example:
    • Providing heavier, early branding can help drive awareness at lower levels of viewability
    • Getting to the point by providing the most important information in the ad up front as opposed to spread across the full 15 seconds makes ads much more persuasive


Click here to download the full report



IPG Media Lab Presents: Viewability Presentation & Panel – May 2016

On May 4, 2016, the research team of IPG Media Lab brought their Viewability Roadshow presentation to the IPG Mediabrands HQ in New York City. Here is the highlight recap of that informative presentation led by Kara Manatt, V.P. of Consumer Strategy at the Lab, and Kiril Tsemekhman from Integral Ad Science, a partner in this joint study, as well as a vibrant panel discussion featuring industry insiders and experts that followed.

To read the report of this large-scale study on viewability standards, please click here.



Viewability Report: Putting Science Behind The Standard

This research report is a joint effort by IPG Media Lab, Integral Ad Science and Cadreon.


Click here to download the full report.

Today, the IPG Media Lab, Integral Ad Science and Cadreon release their joint large-scale research study, first of its kind, on viewability. With the goal of quantifying the relationship between viewability and brand metrics, the research involved nearly 10,000 participants, looking at 189 different ad scenarios. Although the study was not meant to rewrite existing standards, the findings serve as a guide to advertisers and publishers alike regarding how best to make ads more effective given viewability standards.

Key takeaways include:

– Viewability is strongly related to ad effectiveness. As viewability increases, so does consumer attention and ad recall.
– Ads that exceed the MRC standard have 16%+ recall as opposed to ads that meet the standard, which have 2% recall.
– Ad exposure time influences ad effectiveness more than % in view.
– Viewability is important, but it is not the be-all and end-all. It should not be a KPI.

Viewability_Infographic - image

Click here to download the full report.

Click here to see the White Paper of the study.

You can also get the report on Integral Ad Science’s site.



Next Gen Advertising: Could Consumer Excitement Make All the Difference?

Written by Lena Phalen, Research Analyst at Lab’s Research Department


Right Now, We Have a Problem.
These days, consumers are constantly inundated with ads. Trillions of ads are served to US consumers every year. In fact, the average person encounters approximately 1,200 ads per day, according to MAGNA GLOBAL’s estimates. It’s no wonder consumers consider marketing to be out of control. Our standard methods aren’t working – with this amount of volume, people must tune advertising out in order to simply function! This frustration has also resulted in the rise of ad blocking software, which PageFair/Adobe reports about 198 million people worldwide use (43 million in the US alone, according to their 2015 data), compounding issues of ad effectiveness further. The advertising community desperately needs to find better ways of engaging consumers that go beyond the archetypical and ineffective banner ad.

Although technology has amplified issues of ad inundation, it has simultaneously given us tools to better address how to make ad experiences more targeted and enjoyable for consumers. The key is using the tools that we have to improve the effectiveness of ads that are created. For one, we now have the ability to target consumers when they might be in different emotional states, depending on what they are doing or watching – or even to analyze their emotional response to content and creative on a large scale using facial recognition software, such as IPG Media Lab’s AttenTV product. These are powerful, underutilized tools – especially considering that all of the research the IPG Lab has done on the topic suggests that when consumers are in a heightened state of excitement, ads work much harder.

One Solution: Capitalizing on Exciting Content
One way to reach consumers when they are in a happier, more excited state is by pairing ads with content that is proven to do just that. When an earlier Lab study inadvertently revealed that there were significant differences in the perceptions of comparable news sites, we developed a new study to delve further into its effects. From this following research, we found that certain news sites that were more trusted and improved consumers’ emotional well-being in comparison to similar sites resulted in a substantial halo effect for ads on the site. All of the Lab’s studies are scientifically curated to control for demographic and other outside differences, so we were looking at the same ads on each different news site and comparing accordingly. As consumers reported greater amounts of positive feelings, including overall happiness, intrigue, and energy while reading content from the site, as compared to the other similar sites, the ads that were served next to the content also worked harder. They resulted in significantly higher brand metrics, including a 3% higher brand favorability and an impressive 11% higher purchase intent. Even with basic messaging, these ads were more effective.

We also have another study in the works partnering with ZEFR, a company with the ability to identify and target context in video, to investigate the effects of more diverse emotions. Early results are encouraging, indicating that emotional congruency (i.e. matching the tone of ad creatives with content placement) delivers similar benefits to ad effectiveness and improves ad experiences.

Another Solution: Capitalizing on Exciting Situations
We can also easily predict when excitement will rise based on a given situation occurring in different locations, and gear advertising to capitalize on the event. For instance, the Super Bowl. Naturally, consumers will have strong opinions about who they want to win, so we wondered what would happen if a brand aligned with the rooting interest of an audience. The Lab spent some time researching ads that rooted for the two participating teams across the country, and found that these “rooting ads” work far better than standard ads, since nearly everyone was rooting for an outcome and felt passionately. This passion and excitement translated to favorable brand opinions – enough to also significantly move consumers’ purchase intent by 6% compared to standard ads. We even found that the more passion for a team/outcome, the more likely people are to want to purchase the brand.


Another opportunity to utilize exciting occasions has emerged from the mobile app/gaming realm. It is intuitive that during moments of achievement (i.e. reaching a goal, winning something, etc.), consumers are more excited (40% more, according to our research with Kiip), than at other points in the game or app. But, an innovative way of capitalizing on this emotion is to pair advertising with rewards given to consumers after they unlock an achievement, which Kiip has already built a successful ad model around. These rewards have a purpose – consumers can actually use them, and they congratulate consumers when happiness, attention, and engagement levels are at their highest. They were so effective, we noticed a 133% higher purchase intent across the board.


So What Can We Do?
Well, for one: target situations and content that we already know will illicit passion, energy, and excitement from consumers. Whether or not the content is generating the excitement or the current outside situation, it seems that its effects on advertising are quite positive. The same ads will work harder in these situations than if positioned in less stimulating environments.

The data on what kinds of content makes consumers happier and more engaged is out there, whether it be certain news channels, games, or videos. However, we would have to look through the research to find better ad placements based on these emotional criteria. Sometimes finding exciting content is intuitive (with gaming, apps, etc.), but it is harder to predict exactly which news site or news content will raise happiness and engagement levels when compared to others. Just the same, not every brand or brand message needs be happy to emotionally engage audiences. Exciting content and exciting situations are about forming a connection with your audience and eliciting a response—cutting through the ad clutter to distinguish your brand.

This calls for a better database of information that connects research to practice. There is also certainly a great deal of work left to do on this topic, with many more situations left to investigate. The Lab is already looking into some of them, such as video advertising based on emotion. We have the technology: we now need to capitalize on it. It is technology like this, which helps make ads relatable and excitable to consumers, that is the future of next-gen advertising.


Best Of The Lab 2015: How To Create Branded Content That Works

Welcome to the Lab’s year-end review, looking back at some of our best and most popular posts from 2015.

With the rise of ad-blockers, brand advertisers are increasingly turning away from online banners and looking into new ways to reach consumers. One great way to do so is through branded content. Throughout 2015, the Lab’s research team partnered up with Google and Yahoo to study the effectiveness of branded content on a global scale, to better understand consumer perceptions of branded video content, as well as how to use personalization to find the right audience for your brand content. Take a look at our findings:

IPG Lab + Google Release Deconstructing Branded Content: The Global Guide To What Works
IPG Lab + Google Present Blurred Lines: Creating Content That Works
IPG Lab + Yahoo: Giving Consumers The Personalization They Want


IPG Lab + Google Release Deconstructing Branded Content: The Global Guide To What Works

Click here to download the report.

Branded content, defined in this research as content that lives on its own, produced by and for the brand, as opposed to content produced by someone else the brand affixes itself to, has transformed marketing, overall. With the increased emphasis on cross-screen viewing, and digital at the core of brand communications, branded content has become a core part of many brand campaigns.

IPG Media Lab, a division of IPG Mediabrands, in conjunction with Google, today announced the results of the industry’s first global comprehensive branded content effectiveness study. Aiming to understand consumer perceptions and to compare the effectiveness of branded content and video advertising, this closed study surveyed 14,780 consumers, looked at 50 brands, across 19 verticals, in 10 countries, assessing how branded content is perceived in different parts of the world and how this translates into branding effectiveness.

Content That Works

Based on the research we conducted, here are two examples of content that was effective and seen differently by consumers.



You can download and read the report here.


Attentiveness & Receptivity: The New Frontier In Ad Measurement

Download the report here.

The Lab teamed up with YuMe to explore a new measurement frontier: Attentiveness & Receptivity.

Moving beyond reach & frequency, 10,000+ respondent study examines how to identify attentive and receptive audiences. The objective of this research was to deconstruct the indicators of receptivity and determine if they differ by industry vertical.

Receptivity, defined as the willingness to receive a message from a brand before exposure to an ad (passive) and Attention, an active behavior of noticing an ad (active) are the patterns in which consumers interact with advertising. How open are consumers to stimuli (an ad) and how much attention are they giving to the stimuli and to what degree?

Simultaneously, the research sought to conduct attention measurement to test the output of receptivity and establish to what degree attention and receptivity drive brand metrics. From this, marketers can identify appropriate targeting indicators and apply findings to better understand and define an attentive audience.

To learn more about this joint study, download the report here.