A measurement of the heart’s electrical activity. In media and market research, ECG is most commonly used to derive heart rate (see “Heart Rate”) as an indicator of emotional engagement or cognitive effort (see “Cognitive Effort”). Also referred to as “EKG/Electrocardiography.” See also “Biometrics.”

Editorial Content

Any written, visual display or other presentation of information that is posted or published, online or offline, that is designed to educate, inform or entertain an audience. Editorial content is often used to distinguish it from paid or sponsored materials.

Electroencephalography (EEG)

A direct, non-invasive, and safe technique used to measure multiple dimensions of the brain’s electrical activity in one or more regions. This method is used to derive key measures of information processing such as emotional engagement (see “Emotions”) and memory activation (see “Memory”). These measures are often used for evaluating creative concepts, TV-radio-print-internet advertising, video-print-email promotions, packaging, in-store displays and point-of-sale materials, sensory studies (such as food/beverage consumption), and evaluating brand associations.


A measure of the electrical activity produced by skeletal muscles. In media and market research, EMG is most commonly a direct quantification of facial muscle activity often used as an alternative to camera-based solutions and software that measure facial muscle activity in the evaluation of emotional expression (see “Facial Action Coding Systems (FACS)”). Also referred to as “Facial EMG/Electromyography.”

Emotional Appeals

Messages used in advertising that relate to a consumers’ social or psychological needs. These messages use feelings, poignancy, humor, excitement, and other engaging tactics to evoke emotional responses (see “Emotions”) in consumers, thereby playing into people’s desire for love, belonging, security, self-esteem and status, and connecting those positive feelings with a given brand, product or service. See also “Rational Appeals.”

Emotional Trigger

A discrete event or stiumuls, such as a specific sound or image, that acts as an emotional cue for people and elicits a predictable emotional response from them (see “Affective Response”). Emotional triggers are typically based on past experiences with the same or a similar events or stimuli. They may be specific to a given individual or culturally shared. In advertising and marketing, an emotional cue may be used intentionally in order to emotionally engage people.

Emotionally Neutral

In media and market research, the state of consumer response to an advertisement or other marketing stimuli in which there is an absence of a defined or measurable emotional response (see “Emotions”).