Predicting Advertising Success Beyond Traditional Measures: New Insights from Neurophysiological Methods and Market Response Modeling
In the past decade, there has been a tremendous increase in the use of neurophysiological methods to better understand marketing phenomena among academics and practitioners. However, the value of these methods in predicting advertising success remains underresearched. Using a unique experimental protocol to assess responses to 30-second television ads, the authors capture many measures of advertising effectiveness across six commonly used methods (traditional self-reports, implicit measures, eye tracking, biometrics, electroencephalography, and functional magnetic resonance imaging). These measures have been shown to reliably tap into higher-level constructs commonly used in advertising research: attention, affect, memory, and desirability. Using time-series data on sales and gross rating points, the authors attempt to relate individual-level response to television ads in the lab to the ads' aggregate, market-level elasticities. The authors show that functional magnetic resonance imaging measures explain the most variance in advertising elasticities beyond the baseline traditional measures. Notably, activity in the ventral striatum is the strongest predictor of real-world, market-level response to advertising. The authors discuss the findings and their significant implications for theory, research, and practice.