Mindshare U.S. is investing in medical-grade equipment to launch NeuroLab to measure second-by-second, non-conscious neurological responses to brand stories and media. The lab then supplements the data from these brain-derived responses with implicit bias testing and quantitative survey responses.
Based out of the agency's New York office and overseen by Co-Leads Arafel Buzan and James Kelly, the Lab's initial research focuses on audio storytelling, specifically where audio trumps visual creative.
“If you’re heavily investing in silent videos, display ads, or other visual media, the research shows audio is likely a more critical component,” says Joe Maceda, Chief Instigation Officer, Mindshare U.S.
Maceda said results show how powerful audio can be in driving more positive brand associations and driving more positivity for calls-to-action. Audio is the only medium where people consistently get more emotional as the content progresses, he says.
The Lab's research has shown a 40% higher emotional intensity for audio brand stories that mentioned “love” when compared to visual-only brand stories that mentioned love. There’s also much more to explore with the personal connection of audio. For example, 20% of all strong positive emotional peaks in audio occurred during the word “you.”
This initial research examined respondents ages 18-54 who stream music with no pre-existing neurological conditions and with right-hand dominance.
The 90-person sample size was specifically selected after previous academic research in behavioral sciences showed that sample sizes of 30 respondents achieve statistical significance with EEG data. By using a sample size of 90, the NeuroLab can further cut the data by gender, age, or other survey attributes in phase two of the research analysis.
The next phase of this research will focus on specific brand nuances and categories across beauty, retail, travel, and luxury. Additionally, phase two will further explore the relationship between neuro performance and measured performance of each tested ad.
The NeuroLab will also dig into subjects including rules around creative branding, attention spans, customization, and reach versus frequency.