Thursday, November 30, 2006

Industry Confuses Ad Effectiveness With Media Engagement

One of the challenges with media- and publisher-side people is they so often state how engaging their media are, while failing to connect the dots to effectiveness, or some other predetermined business objective. In light of this, Abbey Klaassen at AdAge just reported on Scripps Networks’ argument that receptivity is what the industry should be focusing on:

Scripps Networks is the latest to peel back the layers on engagement, contending that ad receptivity is really what gets viewers to buy the products advertised on TV and asking how one could know whether a program would have a high ad-receptivity ranking.

Where the industry is stuck is they're confusing ad effectiveness and media engagement," said Mike Pardee, senior VP-research at Scripps Networks. Engagement, he says, is a factor of ad receptivity.

"We say you can't discount creative, so unless you have good creative and the existing perception of the brand is reasonable, it's hard to come up with ad effectiveness. What we can deliver is ad receptivity -- you attract the right viewers and offer the right program environment. ... We asked, 'Are there things about media that predict, statistically, the advertising characteristics of a channel?'"

While the brand, advertising creative and hosting media all play a role in the engagement equation, receptivity certainly is an interesting dimension that moves the media side, especially, closer to connecting all those scattered dots. The full AdAge story, with highlights of Scripps' supporting research, is here.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

First of all thanks for that brilliant post. It's a sorely needed piece of the puzzle that I've been spending a lot of time on. However, just a quick comment on this part: "We say you can't discount creative, so unless you have good creative and the existing perception of the brand is reasonable, it's hard to come up with ad effectiveness".

Television advertising is an interrupting communication format It's a trade off for watching the content that people really wish to see. Now particularly in developing economies where media literacy is less developed, an ad secures credibility and trust by being able to purchase the air time.

The customer isn't looking for 10 profound and entertaining think pieces during a commercial break. They're looking for a smooth and informative transition to the television content they sat down to enjoy in the first place. It's enough to show the benefits, provide a reason for purchase, keep it simple, and hey, why not thank them for their time too?

Of course a really interesting ad will wipe the floor with this model any day of the week but the reality is that most advertising is nowhere near that good and in trying to meet all the variables that constitute great and memorable advertising, the business often produces patronising, cliched and synthetic monologues.

5:41 AM  

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