consumer behavior

Not All Boycotts are Equal

A Harvard Business Review paper points to a number of reasons why the Bud Light boycott was more effective than most. The researchers suggest steps companies can take to avoid such boycotts while emphasizing the unique circumstances of this particular situation.  

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Research to Improve AI

Yes, AI is a great tool for marketers. But how can we avoid the “AI Conundrum” – taking advantage of its strengths while avoiding its errors and risks?    

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The Benefits of Understanding Consumers’ Values

Research has demonstrated that developing messages, creative and targeting based only on demographic characteristics is not optimal. Investing in research on consumers’ values and emotions is likely to increase marketing effectiveness.     Read more »

Augmented Reality – Unlock New Technology to Drive Brand Growth

Aarti BhaskaranGlobal Head of Research & Insights, Snap

Kara LouisGroup Research Manager, Snap

Aarti Bhaskaran and Kara Louis of Snap presented their amalgamation of work on augmented reality (AR) with key data and client case studies from the last two years. Showcasing the growth of the AR landscape, Aarti and Kara featured how consumers are gravitating towards AR and the expanding number of opportunities available for advertisers in reaching new audiences and utilizing within the media mix. Case studies include brands using AR try-on technology from Champs Sports and Clearly eyeglasses. Key takeaways:
  • AR usage is widespread and growing, from Boomers to GenZ. By the year 2025 there will be approximately 4.3 billion AR users across all generations.
  • Almost all marketers (91%) think consumers use AR for fun, but 67% of consumers prefer using AR for shopping over fun (53%).
  • Interacting with products that have AR experiences leads to a 94% higher purchase conversion rate, as individuals can better assess them and feel connected with brands. Certain AR applications can substitute physical shopping with different features varying across the customer journey.
  • Interactive and personalized shopping experiences reach Gen Z—92% are interested in using AR for shopping, with over half of Gen Z saying they’d be more likely to pay attention to ads using AR. Gen Zs are also twice as likely to buy items that they have experienced first using AR than those who don’t.
  • AR lenses on Snapchat outperformed all other media formats. Other platforms would need 14-20 ads to generate the same level of attention as Snapchat lenses.
  • AR not only drives short-term impact with higher purchase intent and brand preference, but it also improves brand opinion, influences implicit associations and increases likelihood to purchase and recommend.
  • The creative attributes that include logo and product branding, complexity, messaging and user experience show a significant relationship with AR performance in brand lift.

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Rough Waters? Downstream Effects from the Transition to Streaming Via Smart TVs

David Tice Consultant, HUB Entertainment Research

Justin FrommHead of Insights & Thought Leadership, Samsung Ads

Justin Fromm from Samsung Ads and David Tice of HUB Entertainment Research discussed how consumer behavior is changing due to greater Smart TV penetration and usage. Streaming has become the default method of watching TV for a large swath of viewers. Streaming audiences have also increasingly become more receptive to advertising. Another important trend, Smart TV operating systems (OEMs) are constantly upgraded and made easier to use. As a result, home screen interactions continue to grow. Home screens have played a significant role in content discovery, although TV brand is a moderating factor. Home screens have even helped accelerate the rise of FAST services. In an era of constant churn, coming up in a home screen search and having an advertising model or tier have become critical to retention. Key takeaways:
  • Two-thirds of people in all TV households use a CTV to stream content.
  • Home screen usage is up 140% due to manufacturers consistently improving the user experience and helping viewers find content.
  • Nearly two-thirds of Smart TV users spend most of their time with streaming. In 2022, 70% of all viewing minutes were streamed, and 62% of viewers spent more than half of their time with streaming content.
  • In Q4 of 2023, 64% of respondents said they would rather watch ads and save money on a subscription, up 7% from Q4 of 2022. Ad tolerance has been stable over the last three years.
  • All streaming was up 22% in 2023. AVOD was up 50%, while SVOD use was down 7%. Home screen use was up 117%, and deep link use was up 59% from 2020.
  • Content discovery occurs about 50% of the time from the TV’s home screen, and 50% from an app’s home screen. This varied substantially by brand. For instance, only 38% of TCL owners (bottom of the batch) found content from the home screen.
  • While most found shows from TV promos (61%) in the last year, 17% of respondents found their favorite new show through their TVs’ home screen.
  • Advertising to at-risk audiences on the TVs’ home screen increased retention by a factor of eight.
  • In the last two years, FAST services increased 16%, which was 6% faster than the two years prior. The number one reason people used a FAST app was, they found it on their TV’s home screen (36%).

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How Streaming Release Models Impact Viewing Behaviors

Rebecca FineAssociate Director, Marketing Insights, Samba TV

Cole StrainVP, Head of R&D, Samba TV

An examination of the top H1 2023 streaming shows for household viewership found that original streaming content captures audiences, according to Rebecca Fine and Cole Strain of Samba TV. Bingeing behavior is a significant household viewership change as viewers have shifted from linear to streaming TV consumption. When given the choice, viewers prefer to binge. Seventy-two percent of U.S. adults identify themselves as binge watchers. A consistent trend across viewership for streaming program premieres was that 44% of viewers watched the program in the first four days, and 78% watched the program by day 15. Bingeable shows are more likely to be completed and have higher average retention between season premiere and finale. Forty-five percent of households will finish the whole season when the season drops in bulk, but retention drops to 35% when the show is released weekly. Netflix’s propensity for the bulk release model means that more of its shows get fully consumed. Rebecca and Cole analyzed the top 50 streaming programs and found that most platforms have a high percentage of households who only watch only one show. However, 73% of viewers watch more than one top show on Netflix. Key takeaways:
  • Households like to binge. Forty-seven percent of viewing households binged top bulk release shows in H1 2023.
  • Binge watchers are more likely to watch platforms that release content this way.
  • Seventy percent of millennials are more likely to keep a subscription to streaming services that release shows in bulk.
  • Bingeability might be more important than buzz when it comes to watching a show from the premiere to finale.

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Tune-In to Discover What is Making Audiences Tune-Out

Travis FloodExecutive Director of Insights, Comcast Advertising

Duane Varan, Ph.D.CEO, MediaScience

Travis Flood (Comcast Advertising) and Duane Varan (MediaScience) presented research, which explored improving ad pod architecture, aimed at better engaging audiences by understanding what makes them tune-out. To provide framework to their research process, Travis indicated they started with a literature review, to understand the existing viewer experience. Focus was placed on the quantity, quality and relevance of the ads, in addition to media effectiveness studies (e.g., pod architecture, ad creative, getting the right viewers, etc.). Duane indicated that the literature review unveiled gaps, particularly in the examination of the content within the middle section of an ad pod. Based on this, the goal of the subsequent research was to understand the optimal duration of ad pods to optimize both the viewer experience and brand impact, difference in impact (e.g., more ads vs. fewer ads in the same break duration) and the impact of frequency on viewers and brands. The research included 840 participants who watched a 30-minute program with structured ad breaks. Feedback was measured using a post-exposure survey, neurometrics and facial coding. Results revealed that shorter pod length, grouping consistency in ad length and capping frequency at two to three ads per program as most effective. Key takeaways:
  • Optimal pod length: Two minutes or less leads to better results. After viewing 2 minutes of ads, recall begins to decrease. Recall is 2x higher at 2 minutes vs. 3 minutes, and after 3 minutes, recall is at its lowest point.
  • Viewers are more engaged as ads begin. Using facial coding data showed that for a heavy clutter cell, there was marginally less joy in the first 5 seconds of the ad, indicating that ad load impacts how viewers experience ads.
  • Facial coding data revealed that ad clutter can diminish how funny scenes are for viewers.
  • Consistency is key in ad lengths within a pod. Viewer testing showed that when ads had different lengths in a pod, it made the ad break feel longer compared to pods with ads of the same length.
  • Ad frequency was optimized at two per program. There was significant boost in ad recognition and purchase intent going from 1 to 2 exposures in a program. Capping frequency at 2-3 per program can positively impact recognition and purchase intent.

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Big Data helps solve for Fragmented TV Viewing

James AlexanderProduct Director – Measurement, Inscape

Rich GuinnessAssociate Director, Data Licensing, Inscape

James Alexander and Rich Guinness at Inscape utilized big data to uncover current trends in TV viewing. Streaming continues to cut into linear. Ad supported platforms are growing more popular. People’s thirst for new subscriptions has plateaued. Streaming viewers churn constantly, following the content they want to watch from one platform to another. Bingeing occurs on both linear and streaming, but those who use both binge the most. In today’s environment, new streaming apps grow quickly in both viewership and minutes viewed. Even though they are still a small slice of the pie, FAST apps continue to grow at a rapid pace. Key takeaways:
  • Over the last three years, there’s been a 10% increase in those whose only TV experience is streaming.
  • In Q4 2023, 6.5% of Vizio monitored TV viewers no longer watched cable or satellite, up from 4% in Q4 2022. That number is still growing.
  • The average number of native apps or all apps viewed on CTV (including YouTube) has plateaued at 5.5. This number is not increasing, which is due to churn.
  • Bingeing occurs evenly between linear and streaming, but those who have both are doing it the most. This is likely due to when people miss a few episodes of a favorite show on linear, then hop onto the streaming app to catch up.
  • FAST apps, the “new cable,” are growing rapidly. Fifteen percent of first app opens are a FAST app, and 72% of these viewers are not watching on an MVPD.
  • In their case study, 87% of SVOD users also watch a FAST app, which suggests that viewers are willing to pay top dollar for the right content—a finding that bucks current thinking.

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How Co-viewing and Other Factors Impact Viewer Attention to CTV

Monica LongoriaHead of Marketing Insights, LG Ad Solutions

Tristan WebsterChief Product Officer, TVision

The research presented included an online survey of over 1,000 respondents incorporated with TVision’s 5,000+ U.S. home panel data. Questions asked: 1. Does CTV garner more attention? 2. Are consumers more likely to co-view CTV? 3. Does co-viewing negatively affect attention? TVision’s equipment includes their always-on panel, a webcam that can capture how many people are in the room and eyes on screen at a second by second, a router meter to understand which CTV device is on and detects apps. TVision measurement engine includes remote device management and ACR engine. Findings:
  1. CTV in general has 13% higher attention index. Attention increases due to purposeful watching. Co-viewing CTV has stronger impact in comparison to linear (75% higher).
  2. Streaming is a popular co-viewing experience with mostly a non-negative impact to attention. Households with kids are more likely to pay attention to streaming content and ads with 36% more likely to discuss what is seen on TV. There are three different types of co-viewing: family setup with different age group (increased attention depends on genre), adults only setup with similar gender and age (biggest impact on attention), mixed adults only setup.
  3. Streaming is gaining ground as a co-viewing method for watching sports. Watching sports is typically with other people.
Implications for brands and marketers:
  1. CTV offers opportunity to create more engaging ads with higher levels of attention. CTV has digital capabilities that garner more attention. There is a need to create ads that are specific for CTV (in contrast to linear).
  2. Co-viewing can be an opportunity to turn your brand into a discussion.
  3. Measurement providers give us new insights into viewer behavior.
Key takeaways:
  • There is a higher attention with CTV in comparison to linear.
  • Positive impact of co-viewing: Co-viewing on streaming platforms is popular and generally maintains or increases attention.
  • Streaming is increasingly preferred for watching sports in a co-viewing context, offering new opportunities for targeted advertising and engagement in sports content.
  • Implications for brands and advertisers: The engaging nature of CTV offers ample opportunities for more impactful ads. Co-viewing experiences can transform ads into discussion points among viewers, enhancing brand engagement.

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