Tiny Details Can Make or Break a TV AD

Bruno Ribeiro | October 12, 2018
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When creating an advertising campaign we’re often confronted with choices: should we go with a female character or a male one? The music: soft or upbeat? It’s better to place the brand logo upfront or right on the end of the commercial? While some issues might seem trivial, the tiniest detail decides between a winning campaign or an utterly irrelevant one. Testing ad variations is fundamental to ensure that you make the right choices and your campaigns are ready to roll out.

We recently tested two similar ads from Continente’s World Cup campaign in Portugal, using MindProber’s A/B Testing solution. You might remember them from our World Cup Ads analysis.

On our analysis, Continente came out last of the six campaigns we tested with a combined Affective Footprint Index (AFI) of 3.07. However, the individual results of each ad were markedly different, clearly showing that one of the ads would be a clear winner if the purpose of the test was to choose the final version of the commercial.

While the two ads were in a sense identical, the different executions wielded distinctive outcomes with the target audience. While ad “A” (girl ad) got a 3.30 AFI and mostly a positive feedback from the viewers, ad “B” (boy ad) only got a 2.87 AFI score, well below average.

Notably, ad “B” presented moments of high arousal and negative valence, a combination that indicates stress, an emotional state that should be avoided on the majority of advertising campaigns. More telling, the branding power of each ad was also different.

While 49% of those who saw ad “A” attribute it, to some extent, to the brand, only 35% of those that saw the “B” ad attributed it to Continente. Even worse, from a brand point of view, 42% of those who saw ad “B” thought that it could be an ad from any other retail chain (vs 23% of ad “A” viewers).

f the goal was to test the ads before the campaign, we would suggest Continente either to drop ad “B” from the lineup or, more likely, to tweak the ad a little to remove the stressful situation, for instance by switching the struggle the little boy had to endure to reach the yogurt, for a situation where he cleverly found a solution to circumvent the situation, like using a step that allowed him to reach farther.

While it doesn’t seem much of a change, in a world cluttered with ads and brands competing to reach consumers’ attention, any small difference can have a huge impact. Testing your ads using MindProber’s technology that allows you to pinpoint potential improvement areas on a second-by-second basis, will ensure you’ll deploy the best version of your ads to engage and convert your audience.

Contact us for more information on our ad testing solutions.

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Bruno Ribeiro
Bruno Ribeiro


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