The advertising industry has experienced monumental change over the last few years. The pandemic has in many ways hastened these changes. In order to offer members the crucial insights they need to stay ahead in these unparalleled times, the ARF conducts original research that tackles our industry’s most pressing questions. See this year’s exciting agenda below.
The 2nd Annual Benchmark Survey
The Organizational Benchmark Survey was developed to examine the dramatic changes taking place in advertising and marketing research organizations in recent years. Developed by the ARF Analytics Council, last year’s survey produced a set of reports covering the advertiser, agency, research company, media & entertainment and consultancy sectors. The ARF also released access to the raw data for members to interrogate themselves via our interface. (Note, you must download the free Tableau reader before doing so. Find instructions on how to do so here).
These reports and the database have been helpful to members in understanding how their organization compares to others in their sector, with respect to management of the insights and data analytics functions.
The first survey, conducted in mid-2019, found substantial differences between large and small companies and between companies in different sectors. It also revealed some salient trends in research departments.
The study covers what areas within research and analytics are growing and which ones are contracting. It looks at the technical skills that organizations look for in candidates when hiring for research and analytics departments, both now and in the future. It even asks respondents if they are satisfied with the research function in their companies.
This year, questions on privacy regulations, how COVID affected operations, predictions for 2021, and other areas of interest to the ARF community have been included.
The second Organizational Benchmark Survey has just been launched! To take the survey yourself, click here.
Cross Platform Research
The ARF is conducting an empirical study to determine the relationship between the time someone is exposed to a video ad and its performance. This groundbreaking study will use a mix of recall, eyes-on, biometric and neuro techniques to evaluate video effectiveness. The laboratory tests will include television, desktop, tablet and smartphone. In 2021, the ARF will extend this study to include fieldwork and sales data to support its laboratory conclusions.
Identity Map Providers
Identity map providers link disparate data sets to build a consumer’s profile. In this project, the ARF has pulled together 12 identity mapping providers to catalogue the services they offer, what each company’s focus is and how each conducts research. The goal is to put together an identity mapping providers guide.
Brand Loyalty and Lifetime Value
Are US households loyal to brands like they were in the past? Or has the proliferation of marketing messages on websites, social media and other platforms affected such loyalty? To find out, the ARF is evaluating 10 years’ worth of consumer data it has received from IRI and five years’ worth of data from Nielsen Catalina Solutions (NCS). Expect results early this year.
The Universe Estimate
How many Americans share the username and password of a streaming service with a friend or family member? How many have someone else’s? What type of device do viewers use these apps on? And how many co-viewers are on mobile devices? The ARF’s Universe Estimate Survey investigates these and other such questions.
How Did Brands Handle 2020?
Last year was an anomaly in so many respects. What was it like to advertise during a pandemic-driven recession? What decisions did brands make and what were the results? In this upcoming, multi-year tracking survey, we plan to examine who lost and who gained market share, and why, how long it took for brands that went dark to recover market share and much, much more.
The 4th Annual Privacy Survey
One of our most anticipated studies of the year, our fourth annual report (see the two previous year’s reports here) contains the perennial questions regarding mobile and PC usage, willingness to share digital data, trust and how well privacy terms are understood. In last year’s survey we added questions related to the coronavirus pandemic, including willingness to share health information, who respondents trust when it comes to information about the pandemic and how well COVID-19 terms are understood. How have consumers’ views on privacy changed in this second year of the pandemic? Check back with us later this year to find out.
The ARF Database
What is the relationship between brand and sales advertising? To find out, the ARF is creating a database to enable research on the subject. The annual project’s debut will include over 120 Ogilvy applicants.
The ARF has harmonized this effort with a similar project conducted by IPA in the UK. Each entry will include brand and product category, age, share, consideration, pricing position, growth, sales cycle, campaign objective, primary target, media plan, competitive strategy, outcomes, research used and brand equity.
WOW! The Wit and Wisdom of Erwin Ephron (eBook)
Erwin Ephron was a luminary in our industry, and his words still ring true for so many pertinent topics today, including for media planning, research, targeting, reach and recency, and so much more. The ARF is honored to have been bequeathed an enormous cache of Ephron’s writings, a windfall which contains almost two decades worth of newsletters, articles and letters. Currently, we are in the process of cataloging these and several are being earmarked for an eBook, to be entitled: WOW! The Wit and Wisdom of Erwin Ephron. This monograph will be offered free to members and Ephron’s entire cache – over 500 pages of writings – will be made available via our website through PowerSearch.
The ARF Podcast Series
We’re entering the audio space! The ARF Podcast will deliver the latest insights from the topmost minds in advertising, marketing and media research, available anytime right at your fingertips. The podcast will feature interviews, panel discussions and presentations from our prestigious members, as well as those from the newly merged Marketing Science Institute (MSI). Find it wherever you listen to podcasts.
Contact Paul Donato (PDonato@thearf.org) for more information.