Future States

Read the latest and most impactful research on future states and emerging technologies for innovating research methods here. All the research listed comes from the ARF or one of its subsidiaries: The Journal of Advertising Research (JAR), the Marketing Science Institute (MSI) or the Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement (CIMM). Feel free to bookmark this page, as it will be updated periodically.

If You Stream It, They Will Come: Marketing Through Streaming Platforms

  • MSI

Livestreaming platforms and social shopping in general have grown into marketing channels that can be very lucrative for several different categories. However, livestreaming stands apart from “normal” social media in the fact that influencers are less reliant on corporate sponsors, as they have their own customer base that they rely on. So, how can marketers be successful within these channels? This Marketing Science Institute (MSI) working paper illustrates what forces are at play with livestreaming and how to balance them for the benefit of all parties.

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Minimizing Risk and Inspiring Innovation When Using GenAI and LLMs

Generative AI (GenAI) and Large Language Models (LLMs) have reached a point in their development where they have become tools so powerful, they will quickly become too important to ignore. Proper use can drive greater efficiency, productivity, better automation and even become new revenue drivers, according to this concise, how-to guide written by Steven Millman, ARF board member and Global Head of Research & Data Science at Dynata. It describes best practices and potential pitfalls in data privacy and security, protecting IP, oversight and more.

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The ARF Handbook for Using AI in Advertising Research

Significant developments in AI have occurred in the last two years, allowing it to be used in various places in the advertising industry. One area that has received little attention however is advertising research. Recognizing this, the ARF has conducted a significant number of its own research. The product of this effort is an AI handbook that offers practical advice in several key aspects of using AI for advertising research. Moreover, an interactive function allows experts to leave comments that, once verified, will be integrated into the report, making it a living, breathing document that continues to evolve as AI advances.

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How to Leverage the Video Game Ecosystem for Marketing Analytics

  • MSI

Online video gaming is a channel that has grown significantly in popularity in the last decade and the trend is likely to continue. Due to a massive group of highly engaged gamers, marketers can use this channel to understand this segment and their needs much better. However, this ecosystem, along with providing unique opportunities, also comes with unique challenges. This Marketing Science Institute (MSI) working paper offers a roadmap.

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Young People Respond Favorably to ASMR Ads on YouTube

  • JOURNAL OF ADVERTISING RESEARCH

For many college-age consumers, the tingles and relaxing sensations that come from experiencing autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR) can be weird and fun, but off-putting when, say, an endorser is too chatty and loud in the video. New research uses these insights to guide marketers and suggest that ASMR ads, typically aired on YouTube and other, non-traditional channels, are more effective at gaining attention than on traditional media.

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The ARF Attention Measurement Validation Initiative: Phase 1 Report

  • ARF ORIGINAL RESEARCH

Attention metrics have drawn a high degree of energy in the last few years, for many reasons, including the loss of behavioral signals due to privacy restrictions, growing frustration with ad viewability and its perceived limitations, attention metrics’ impact on the cross-platform measurement debate and that biometric technologies can now be applied “in the wild,” rather than just in labs. The ARF’s Attention Measurement Validation Initiative aims to describe the attention measurement space in detail, illuminating this nascent sector. The Phase One findings include a comprehensive literature review and a report that maps out the vendor landscape in this increasingly diverse specialty. The report includes two sections. The first section describes what methods are being used, what these companies report and how and what they measure, be it ad creative or the media environment. The second section includes in-depth overviews of the 26 participating attention measurement companies. The Phase One Report is a must-read for anyone interested in attention metrics or what companies are operating in the space.  

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MSI Blue Ribbon Report Preview Charts the Future of MMM

  • MSI

The practice of marketing mixed modeling (MMM) is increasing, research finds, partially because of the implementation of privacy restrictions. Today, finding appropriate providers to optimize marketing investments remains challenging. This was the impetus behind the Marketing Science Institute (MSI)’s Blue Ribbon Report on MMM. This free preview of the full white paper outlines what best practices to employ in a rapidly changing landscape. It identifies challenges for MMM veterans and ways to meet them. It also introduces executives to the opportunities that exist when introducing MMM into their firm. The report preview provides a brief overview of the top-level findings found in the full report, which is only available to MSI members.

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Attention and Ad Impact: The Evolution of Attention Metrics

  • ARF Knowledge at Hand, CMO Brief

The proliferation of media platforms, with increases in multi-tasking, has made finding ways to get consumers to pay attention to advertising more important than ever. In response, researchers have developed new methods to assess attention and the ARF has found that they can provide more direct and more accurate measurements. However, as these metrics are constantly evolving, there are open questions regarding their validity and reliability. Further, as researchers are using the term “attention” in different ways, clarity about what is meant by attention and how it is being measured is crucial.

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The Attention Measurement Validation Initiative: Literature Review

Attention metrics are at a pivotal point in our industry. They are moving from the lab into the marketplace. Being at the forefront of such research, the ARF is studying 23 attention measurement providers. The goals of the study are to better understand the different tools being used, their validity, reproducibility and rightful application—whether in evaluating ad creative or the media environment. In the first phase of the project, ARF researchers produced a literature review, which itself is illuminating and adds much needed context. We now offer this review to our members. In addition, the first phase will also include a comparative analysis and profiling of all the participating measurement companies. Stay tuned for this upcoming report.