The ARF was founded in 1936 with a mission to improve the practice of advertising, marketing, and media research in pursuit of more effective marketing and advertising communications.
True to that mission, during its 80th year in 2016, the ARF launched a major new initiative, “How Advertising Works.” The goal was to deliver objective research-based insights that improve advertising and, ultimately, the return on marketing investments (ROI), with actionable insights for marketers in today’s media, consumer, and advertising environments. The study, which is ongoing, is focused on how advertising works today.
But it also provides valuable lessons about the history of advertising research and a glimpse into the future of such research.
The most important conclusion: three factors have been driving advertising research over the past 80 years. They are still the main drivers today and, we believe, will drive advertising research in the future:
- The emergence of new advertising platforms
- Changes related to the consumer
- Methodology and data source innovation
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