‘Kantar’s study has shown stories create room for empathy & engagement’

Prasanna Kumar, Executive Vice President, Insights Division, Kantar, shares insights on the Kantar Creative Effectiveness Study 

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Published: Jun 27, 2022 3:51 PM  | 6 min read

What is the USP of Kantar Creative Effectiveness Study and brand rankings?

What makes these awards unique is that consumers are the jury. As people control a brand's fortunes through their spending power, their voice decides what is effective advertising.

Please walk us through the methodology of the study.

The award is based on the Kantar Link quantitative ad evaluation studies that we do for our clients. Throughout 2021 Kantar, the world’s leading marketing data and analytics company tested more than 13,000 creatives for clients around the world. 10% (1300+) of those creatives were tested in India alone.

What are the parameters on which the campaigns have been judged and what sets the winners apart?

The scores for evaluating and ranking ads come from our Link ad testing solution. Link is independently validated to predict how an ad will deliver ROI for brands, both in the short term and the long term.  It’s the world’s most trusted ad testing solution, having been used over 230,000 times, and because not only is it predictive, but its diagnostic measures help to guide ad optimisation to maximise that ROI.

The Link measures that underpin our awards are the Short-Term Sales Likelihood and Power. For those of you less familiar with these measures, STSL is the probability that an ad will drive a short-term sales response. And Power gives a prediction of the likelihood that an ad will contribute to a brand's longer-term equity. We recognise that not all ads seek to do both, but the approach provides a fair framework for assessment and recognises the power of creative to build brands, not just activate sales.  Both our headline measures are validated against real life outcomes and both contain metrics that relate to creative impact. That means that we are getting a read of both creative excellence and brand outcomes.

What are the key findings of this study and how can advertisers use the learnings?

  1. Indians love to ride fulfilling story arcs: Stories create room for empathy, engagement, and vivid memories through which one could influence the way in which consumers think & feel about the brands.
  2. Touch of drama helps: Just the right kind and quantity of spice delivered through creative storytelling and filmmaking, elevates even the repetitive themes, to make them more personal, relevant and aspirational.
  3. License to be extravagant in visualization: Indians are open to suspending their disbelief for the well-visualised film
  4. Layer in emotional meaningfulness: Emotive contexts have the potential to make the consumers warm up to even the dry functional categories.
  5. Show, not tell: Integrating brand payoffs as an organic plot event in the script is a timeless approach towards creating vivid and persuasive memories.

Customized and integrated content yields significantly higher ROI: Carrying forward creative stories and elements from other media amplify the impact of digital assets.

Shoot for instant meaning: Given the attention poor consumers and short window available, it pays to ensure that the consumers are not called to do any additional work for decoding what they are supposed to think and feel about the brand

Ride the moment: Embrace the topical issues and trends, to engage and be relevant

Strike an emotive chord: Well-told stories open up consumers for longer format videos

Hook them early:  Promise of a fulfilling story arc, emotive journey and humour help in ensuring that consumers stay invested beyond 6 seconds.

Can give a detailed analysis of the winning campaigns in terms of creative effectiveness.

HUL campaigns have been consistent - last year and this year. If you can cite a few reasons behind HUL campaigns making the cut.

HUL have built culture and processes around creating advertisements based on consumer insights, learnings accumulated over the years, and investing in research to refine them based on consumer feedback.

How is this year's study different from last year’s - have you made additions to categories or has there been a change of approach?

This year we have added two additional categories – one for ads for services brands, and another for ads that epitomized mainstreaming positive gender portrayal (Unstereotype advertising)

In terms of digital and TV campaigns - what are major differences that you have noticed and want to highlight?

The key differences are more due to the nature of engagement with content in the digital platforms and the inherent differences in deployment format.

The need for evoking Instant meaning is a lot more critical for making an impact in the case of digital ads, as consumer’s attention is short and shallow. In case of longer than 6s formats, the challenge in the first 6s is to leave behind vivid memories about the brand AND to give consumers enough reason to stay invested in watching the ad and hit the skip or scroll.

Gender progressiveness is a significant part of your study this year - which are some of these campaigns that you would like to call out and what has worked for them?

Many of the strong ads weaved in progressive gender portrayals in a subtle and engaging manner without really attempting to make a social commentary.

We see in a Couple Confess execution, wherein a newly married couple navigates through the gender roles, expectations from each other and the practical demands of a setting of a house through Amazon.

In the Dumb Charades execution, we have a short & sweet story of the super dad who’s cooking. The brand through the aid of the son and the mnemonic ‘Pour Rub Pour’, saves his day as homemaker by cleaning up the stain.

In the Braids execution, Nihar Naturals smoothly blends in brand’s hair nourishment benefit with the drama around the growth in confidence of a girl in making her own life choices.

And yes, the Vim Arrange Marriage execution, sets the bar higher even for the self-assured progressive men. It invites them to not draw any lines in context of sharing household work – be it washing dishes or taking of the house in general.

If you were to draw up a checklist for creative agencies to come up with creatively effective ads, what would the Do's and Don'ts be?

The spread of ads that consumers have perceived to be both creative and effective is an affirmation of the fact that the space for creativity even in the context of marketing ROI is infinite. While there is no magic formula for creating such ads, we can start with the right ingredients and refine them by testing them out with consumers.

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