research quality

Conversations with Great Minds: Great Mind Awards 2022

Conversations with Great Minds gathered two of the 2022 Great Mind Award winners, Martin Renaud, winner of the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Award, and Dr. Duane Varan, winner of the Erwin Ephron Demystification Award, for one-on-one interviews that profile their individual approaches to effective research in advertising.

Inclusive Innovation: Transformative Insights for a New Era

On August 17, Young Pros across the industry reunited in-person for the first time in two years at the VMLY&R offices in New York City for an evening of knowledge sharing, thoughtful discussion, and networking. “Inclusive Innovation: Transformative Insights for a New Era” inspired attendees to bring meaningful change back to their organizations. Carrie Patterson Reed, Executive Director of VMLY&R’s Research Studio, Jessica Kukreti, Managing Director VMLY&R and Amber Chenevert, PhD Managing Director Strategy & Insights and Culture Studio Lead, VMLY&R shared how designing inclusive research, thinking critically by considering bias and allowing ourselves to be uncomfortable all have the power to transform and drive solutions for the good of business and society. One key takeaway – always ask questions. Young pros then turned insight into action by participating in a workshop that asked teams to rethink how each phase of an ad campaign can incorporate diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Inclusion by Design in Pharma Research and Marketing

This ARF Pharma Council event followed up on the Council’s podcast episode on “Inclusive Futures of Humancare,” focusing on the importance of inclusiveness in pharma research and marketing with respect to both demographic characteristics and health conditions.  Four speakers delivered brief presentations, followed by a discussion moderated by Pharma Council Co-Chair Marjorie Reedy of Merck.


On June 7, 2023, attention economy experts came together in NYC to share case studies and participate in engaging discussions on the attention measurement landscape. Plus, attendees heard a recap of the issues debated at AUDIENCExSCIENCE and an update on Phase I of the ARF Attention Validation Initiative, an empirically based evaluation of the rapidly developing market for attention measurement and prediction.

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Let’s Face It: Facial Coding Isn’t Up to the Task

There are limitations in terms of measuring the emotional impact of video. Facial expressions are powerful. Neuroscience has proved that special parts of our brain is dedicated to faces. Development psychology also demonstrates the power of facial expressions. Consumer neuroscience also demonstrates the importance of faces. The question is whether Facial Action Coding System (FACS) is the best tool to measure consumers emotional response when viewing ads?

Using Attention AI to Predict Real-World Outcomes

Mars and Realeyes prove connection between creative attention and sales performance. Mars’ Agile Creative Expertise (ACE) tool tracks visual attention and emotion responses to digital video ads. Visual attention AI and facial coding measures how long participants watch a video and how their attention changes as they watch. Proven this model to work—optimizing content, lifting sales up to 18% in 19 markets, $30 million in ad optimizations in 18 months.

In-Home Psychophysiological Television Measurement

How to measure attention? This presentation introduced MindProber—a tool that includes biometrics, physiology, conscious/dial AND survey methods to assess attention. MindProber measurement is passive—second by second emotional engagement is measured through electrodermal activity (EDA), aka galvanic skin response (GSR) and also active—measures cognitive response via an optional feature to indicate like/dislike content through app. N= 1,500 and growing to 3,000 by end of year.

Why Visual Attention is a Flawed Measure of Attention

Because of the complexity of attention, Duane Varan proposes to focus on inattention and regard attention as absence of inattention. Attention is the threshold above which the cognitive processing of stimuli occurs. It is not linear; it’s best understood as occurring above a threshold (inattention) after which other variables can deliver their value. There are many different kinds of attention, and the different measures capture the different types of attention. Inattention, on the other hand, is a constant construct.

Charting the Course for Third Party, Cross-Media Audience Measurement

In this session, Tina Daniels and Nicole Gileadi examined Google’s principles for charting the course for third-party cross-media audience measurement. Tina acknowledged more third-party measurement companies were expressing interest in working more closely with Google, given their stature as the world’s largest video provider. In her discussion, she acknowledged that this interest generated the need for Google to create a set of principles to offer to both measurement companies and key clients to guide the process. After reviewing these principles Tina and Nicole held an open discussion regarding these principles. Topics of the discussion included premium and high-quality content, long-form versus short-form video and the measurement of this content. In addition, Nicole touched on the importance of content and the context surrounding an ad. Other areas included the idea of exposure metrics (e.g., Where is my audience? Did I reach them?) in addition to providing signals to conduct an impact analysis.

Nielsen One Comes to Market

Scott McDonald opened the session by discussing how the Census uses sample to correct for issues like undercounts in big data. Pete Doe (Nielsen) responded by commenting on persons who ask: do you have a Big Data solution or a panel solution? He doesn’t see it that way but rather you take all the signals you have and put them together in the best way for the problem at hand.