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How to maximize the consumer attention opportunity in the cookieless era

By Ian Darby | journalist

July 5, 2022 | 5 min read

With brands facing the imminent demise of the third-party cookie, the advertising industry’s focus has turned to contextual advertising solutions, which inherently don't rely on cookies.

Context, creative and attention

Context, creative and attention - a powerful fusion for better advertising

But advertisers continue to face challenges along the way, not least in measuring the effectiveness of their digital advertising. There's a long-running back story to this in terms of the debate about industry viewability standards supported by industry bodies such as the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), and the US Media Ratings Council (MRC).

Major advertisers remain concerned about digital advertising standards, and continue to look for greater transparency from publishers and the ad ecosystem. A potential solution lies in the idea of ‘Attention Time’ - the length of time, in seconds, the ad is looked at.

Rob Hall, chief executive at Playground xyz, the advertising technology company owned by GumGum, says: “Based on our own experiences quantifying the performance of branded content, we believe there’s a need in the industry to establish a purer, human- and attention-centric approach to measure ad effectiveness.”

High impact on awareness and recall

Previous research from Playground has shown the potential for ‘Attention Time’ in recording and predicting key performance indicators, especially when compared to viewability. Namely that it is 7.5 times more important an ingredient of driving awareness, and 5.9 times when it comes to recall.

The more ‘Attention Time’, the more pronounced the awareness outcome. In one campaign that featured in the research, awareness moved from 30% for consumers with an attention time of under 10 seconds to 52% for 10-20 seconds, and 67% for more than 20 seconds. In real terms, this means that the chance of achieving a lift in awareness increased by 11% for each additional second of ‘Attention Time’ achieved.

Beyond this, the longer the ‘Attention Time’, the more pronounced the recall outcome. One campaign moved from 48% recall for 0-10 seconds attention time to 52% for 10-20 seconds, and 76% for more than 20 seconds. This means the chance of achieving a lift in recall increased by 7% for each additional second of ‘Attention Time’ achieved.

Context, creative and attention

Playground xyz is now set to publish a new piece of research, Context, Creative and Attention, that will dig far deeper into the attention issue, based on further research and in-market application across hundreds of global brands and thousands of campaigns.

“This large-scale research into context, creative and attention delivers some novel insights and actionable strategies for brands, agencies and publishers who are using contextual advertising and want to get the most out of their advertising spend,” says Hall.

For instance, it reveals in detail the extent to which the context of an ad has a bearing on the attention it achieves, and exactly why brands need to better measure and understand the impact of contextual targeting at a creative level.

To launch the research, and to discuss its impact on the advertising and media industry, Playground xyz has partnered with The Drum to stage a live event on July 14 that will debate some of the issues involved in greater detail. These include:

  • Can attention time act as a feedback loop on contextual relevance?

  • Is there a correlative relationship between context, creative and attention?

  • And is this relationship static or dynamic?

  • To what degree could the relationship be optimized on behalf of advertisers?

Because these are such fundamental subjects for many across the industry, The Drum's audience will have exclusive access to a video of the event and key takeaways from the panel. Watch out for more information soon after the session.

Creativity Creative Works Brand Strategy

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Playground xyz

Playground XYZ is on a mission to master the art and science of maximizing consumer attention. The company has built the world’s first technology stack that integrates visual attention measurement, analytics and media optimization called the Attention Intelligence Platform.

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