Survey Of CMOs Evaluates Advertising Creative Performance, Impact

Evaluating creative performance is key to successful advertising campaigns. At least that's what BrandTotal suggests, based on results of a survey conducted in April in which more than 500 CMOs of consumer-facing brands across the United States participated.

The idea was to better understand how these companies evaluate their advertising creative performance and impact.

The leading factors for these campaigns are media at 48%, and creative, at 52%.

The creative part seems to have a lasting impact on social advertising campaign performance, especially when tracking competitive digital and social advertising campaigns from competitors. 

Alon Leibovich, co-founder and CEO of BrandTotal, believes that while there has always been a friendly rivalry between media and creative teams, doubling down on creative concepting by leveraging brand marketing analytics and competitive creative intelligence can only make media spends more efficient.

CMOs say creative teams are stretched thin, according to the study. Some 67% said their team must do manual screenshots in order to discover competitors’ creative campaigns, versus using an automated tool that helps them gather insights.



The survey suggests that nearly two-thirds of respondents rely on in-house employees to drive creative, with 22% saying creative is driven by CEOs or CMOs. In fact, 25% have an in-house creative lead and 25% have created an in-house creative agency or team.

Only 37% of respondents said they benchmark creatives against competitors' advertising creative by using a creative intelligence tool, but 87% of respondents said they had a tool to measure the impact of creative performance.

About 82% of survey respondents shared that they have shifted campaign creatives based on what creative ads their competitors have leveraged in the market, creating an inefficiency in terms of how this data on competitors is getting to CMOs.

Some 86% of survey respondents shared that a shorter cycle from ideation to campaign launch would positively affect their marketing and advertising initiatives, and 58% of the same group shared that this is not happening because the current creative team is tasked with too much.

The survey also showed that 82% of survey respondents acknowledged that they have shifted their brand creative because of what they saw a competitor doing, and when the shift happened, 77% reported that it resulted in better campaign outcomes. 

More than 90% of respondents said they employ A/B testing of their own media creative on social media, with 41% saying the motivation is to improve campaign spend efficiency, and 29% citing that they use the tactic to improve conversion rate. 

Only 25% of survey respondents said their reason is to ensure that the creative appeals to consumers and they have a favorable opinion of the brand. About 86% of respondents saw better campaign outcomes when they shifted the creative.


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