Power of relevancy in online advertising
Researchers have delved into how people respond to advertising in different online scenarios, and we've seen, for example, in Yahoo's "Advertising by Mindset" study, that consumers feel differently about the online advertising they encounter depending on the type of online activity in which they're engaged.
- So when paying the phone bill or accomplishing any other goals, they tend to be less open to intrusive ad formats; personally relevant advertising is key to reaching someone in this mindset.
- But if someone's watching an interview with celebrities from a new movie release, or browsing the latest gossip about the upcoming royal wedding, distractions are OK and the large ad formats aren't so bad, in fact, they're preferred. In this environment of leisurely browsing, contextual relevancy is probably more critical.
In fact, Yahoo's most recent study "The Power of Relevancy: The Biometric Impact of Online Advertising" confirms that ads that are personally and contextually relevant drive both strong and positive cognitive and emotional responses to advertising messages.
In fact, the same ad can elicit a very different type of biometric response, depending on whether the ad is personally relevant to the consumer or contextually relevant to the content being consumed.
Interestingly, these two types of relevance have their own unique advantages when it comes to getting our attention: personal relevance makes people fixate on an ad longer, increasing the potential for a stronger emotional and cognitive response, while contextual relevance makes people notice ads faster, making it more likely they'll store them in their long-term memory for later recall. When used together, the two tactics elicit an impressively high level of cognition and positive emotional resonance.
By understanding how consumers absorb all the available content and stimuli out there-- how even our most basic biology tells a story about what we think of the world around us-- we can continue to untangle the advertising landscape and ultimately do a better job connecting with consumers.