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Obstacles for the Metaverse

Nearly three-quarters of consumers say they have heard of the “Metaverse,” as of March, according to Marketing Dive. That’s a noteworthy bump in awareness compared to last July (32%). But familiarity does not equate to understanding. A March 2022 survey by Wunderman Thompson Intelligence in the US, UK and China (shared with Marketing Dive) found that 74% have heard the term metaverse. Does that mean the metaverse has already entered the mainstream? The study also found that just 15% of respondents felt they could explain what the metaverse is to other people. Despite this, two-thirds of consumers believe the concept could be life-changing, 68% described it as the “next internet” and 74% stated it is representative of the future. Marketing Dive commented that most people simply have heard the term. That does not correlate to education about its innerworkings, as few would feel confident describing what the metaverse is in practice. Wunderman Thompson Intelligence describes it, at the most basic level, as “an extension of our lives enhanced by technology.” Given the knowledge gap, the growing belief among consumers that the metaverse represents “the future” might need to be taken with a grain of salt. Worries persist around the metaverse, with 72% of parents concerned about children’s privacy and 66% about children’s safety. Still, the study, which surveyed over 3,000 people in the 16-65 age range in the U.S., the U.K. and China, indicates that the metaverse has earned a spot in public discourse that could help hurry along its adoption. In an encouraging sign for brands, 89% of consumers surveyed by Wunderman Thompson Intelligence said the advertising industry would be impacted by the metaverse. Other top-ranking categories included retail (86%), fashion (85%) and finance (82%), while food and beverage landed at the bottom of the list (74%). Source: Adams, P. (2022, May 6). Metaverse goes mainstream, but most consumers still don’t understand it. Marketing Dive.

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Earth Day at 52

Born to combat pollution, environmentalism's annual observance is poised to inspire more than ever—if governments, the public and brands can figure out what it means now. There is one small thing Denis Hayes might have done differently when he was organizing the first Earth Day in 1969: had it trademarked. The idea did not end there. And a lot has changed since the first Earth Day. As Hayes acknowledged to Adweek, Earth Day the brand belongs to pretty much any entity that wants to claim it. “Earth Day is a reminder that, though the challenges ahead of us are big, we can rise to meet them if we come together and demand better.” Jenny Powers, CCO, Natural Resources Defense Council. Source: Kaplan, D. (2022, April 22).  Earth Day at 52: A Case for Relevance—and a Rebrand. Adweek.

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Peers vs. Fears: How Ambivalence and Norms Shape Consumer Decisions

  • MSI

How does ambivalence affect consumer choice, when it comes to deciding whether to consume alcohol, recreational drugs or certain foods or beverages—like energy drinks. This ambivalence creates arousal, which causes the consumer to focus attention on the immediate, positive outcomes of such a choice. However, it also engages a moderating effect, their awareness of their peers’ behavior when faced with such decisions.

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NYCU: Increased Attention to Outdoor Ads

Americans are noticing more out-of-home ads since the lockdowns   A new study by the OAAA – the Outdoor Advertising Association of America - in conjunction with The Harris Poll, finds that nearly half of Americans (45%) say that they notice out-of-home advertising more than they did before the pandemic. Also, almost half say out-of-home advertising is more effective to them now, and a majority report having a greater appreciation of their surroundings when outside. A large percentage of respondents say they find signage about hygiene, safety and sales to be useful, while others say they’re comforted by the mere existence of outdoor display as a sign of business returning to some semblance of normality. Sources: Craft, E. G. (2020, October). Americans are noticing more out-of-home ads since the lockdowns. Ad Age.  Full article available only for AdAge subscribers. Ad Exchanger (2020, October 16). Out Is In. AdExchanger.  

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NYCU: Out-of-Home Becomes Digital

Outdoor advertising is trending towards digital, which is changing its role in the marketing mix.  We define DOOH as any out-of-home (OOH) advertising that is dynamically and digitally displayed. It includes digital billboards, digital street furniture, digital transit and digital place-based display. We categorize DOOH as a subset of OOH, not as a subset of digital advertising. In 2020, DOOH will account for one-third of total US OOH ad spending. Back in 2015, DOOH's share of total OOH was just 17.0%, about half of what it is today. From 2017 to 2019, the number of total digital displays in Outfront Media’s US portfolio increased from 1,693 to 7,266. The Outdoor Advertising Association of America (OAAA) showed that in the US, there were 5,742 digital street furniture outdoor ad placements, 7,847 digital transit displays, and 5,830 digital shopping mall, place-based ad units in first half of 2020. Digital billboards are the most common type of DOOH advertising. Per OAAA, the number of digital billboards in the US reached 9,600 in first half of 2020. In 2016, there were just 6,700 digital billboards, a 43.3% increase over a handful of years. Outdoor advertising has historically been about awareness and upper-funnel branding. Now that outdoor is becoming more digitized and data-driven, it has grown more common for direct-response and direct-to-consumer (D2C) advertisers to use OOH to acquire customers. D2C advertisers are investing in OOH, as well as TV, because they need more reach than what they can get from social and other digital display. Source: Benes, R. (2020, August 10). Out-of-Home Advertising Is Becoming More Digitally Driven. eMarketer.  

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YP Share Group – Managing Remotely (Up, Down and Sideways)

The focus of the ARF’s Managing Remotely Share Group was how to effectively communicate up to a team leader, down to a direct report or laterally with other team members. Cole Strain, Head of Measurement Solutions at Pinterest shared his strategies and experience with remotely managing people and projects. Following the presentation, attendees joined small moderated breakout sessions where they discussed personal and professional challenges while working remotely, including creative ways to connect, a new work/life balance, and how to continue these practices if or when there is a return to the office.

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NYCU: Research Shows Demand for Change

New data show that most Americans want brands to “step up and play a central role in addressing systemic racism.” From The Edelman Trust Barometer: This is a mandate for brands to act, because consumers will exercise brand democracy with their wallets. In the past, CEOs have spoken out on societal issues on behalf of corporate America. Today, the CMO and CCO must join them as stewards of brand action. Here are the important findings: --Only 40 percent of Republicans expect brands to take a stand on racism, versus 80 percent of Democrats and 54 percent of independents. And twice as many Democrats say they will buy or boycott brands depending on their actions around correcting racial injustice (78 percent versus 43 percent of Republicans). --Four times as many respondents said taking a stand gains brand trust versus loses it. This is true across the political spectrum and by gender and age groups. --Thirty-seven percent of respondents said they have attempted to convince others to start or stop using a brand based on its stand on racial inequality. The voice of the brand connects in a different way than corporations and CEOs; it inspires, motivates, and offers hope. It is powerful in making change because it stirs emotions and provokes response. The relationship of trust between brand and consumer now depends on tangible actions destined to change the course of history. Source: Edelman, R. (2020, June 9). A Universal Demand for Change.” Edelman  

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Brand Advertising in the Time of Coronavirus (Event Summary)

  • VIRTUAL INSIGHTS STUDIO SERIES

The coronavirus is an inflection point in world history that all of us will remember for the rest of our lives. To understand the influence of advertising in this troubled time, four ARF member companies — Ameritest, Dynata, iSpotTV, and Research Measurement Technologies (RMT) — came together to measure the collective impact of some morale-building brand advertising. They measured the in-market impact of 10 ads from Budweiser to Facebook to Walmart to understand advertising’s impact on the American people’s shared memories of this cultural moment. Presented by Chuck Young – Founder & CEO, Ameritest Discussant Scott McDonald, PhD – President & CEO, ARF Editor’s Note: The full summary is available to members only.

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NYCU: More Cynicism Towards Ads & More “Normality”?

Editor’s Note: The next report, based on research by Forethought, shows some negative attitudes about advertising. Their research also provides a trend on their “Normality” score, which is based on seven questions. (Two of those – feeling confident in the economy, feeling confident to be out in public – represent almost half of the scoring.) This week’s Normality score is the highest of the six weeks of response, but it is still far from the 100% level.  Perceptions of normality have nearly entirely rebounded back to where they were 6 weeks ago, currently at 52%.  Without any real medical or economic justification, Americans have signalled a loss of patience with the dual crises and commenced to muscle their way back to normality.     Source: Forethought (2020, April 28).  Return to Normality? A Pulse on the USA Consumer – Normality Week 6. Forethought.    

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