This JAR paper – written by a number of prominent neuroscience researchers, including owners of neuromarketing companies – raises some caveats about these new methodologies. It was written 2013-14 and, therefore, does not necessarily reflect the state of neuromarketing in 2018. However, it provides insights on the pros and cons of different methods and advice on how advertisers who are looking for better measures of consumer response to advertising should navigate this field which are still very relevant today:
- Vendors of neuromarketing research offer a wide range of methodologies and they often claim proprietary differences. The authors urge buyers of such research services to examine methods and claims carefully.
- In the authors’ opinion, many neuro vendors have cultivated an expectation that their measures are more reliable than traditional measures because they measure neurological and biological processes. They question these claims and suggest that advertisers ask vendors for evidence of validation.
- The authors analyzed results from the ARF’s “neuro studies” and find that the various methods tested in the first study in 2011 did not produce the same results and that, because of a lack of transparency, it was not possible to understand the reasons for the differences.
It should be noted that the ARF, too, has concluded that greater transparency and more validation of these methods is needed and has recommended that users of these methods compare vendors and methods carefully (See Stipp and Woodard, 2011.)