NEWS26 September 2019

Ad creativity missing the mark

Asia Pacific Media News UK

UK/AUSTRALIA – Only one in four creative award-winning campaigns deliver brand impact over the short or long term, according to new research from Kantar.

The research was based on analysis by Kantar Marketplace of this year’s Cannes Lions using Link Now, its creative pre-testing tool, which measures an advert’s ability to deliver against short and long-term brand goals.

The results were bench-marked against Kantar’s database of almost 200,000 ads, including previous Cannes winners. The research found that this year’s winners were only 50% as effective at long-term brand building compared to five years earlier. 

It identified poor branding as the key issue – just one quarter of the 2019 Cannes award winners were easily linked to the brand, and in certain cases, consumers were unable to even remember what category the ad was for.

It also found that the content often struggled to make the brand meaningful to consumers. Just one in six ads among the award-winning campaigns had strong potential to drive brand affinity, and less than half triggered a strong positive emotional response.

Daren Poole, Kantar’s global head of creative, said: “The decline in effectiveness over time is staggering. Creative content should not just be recognised for its artistry, or for tackling a serious issue, it needs to work as an investment for the brand, driving both short and long-term impact. Ads without strong branding are entertainment at best – but even then, we have seen enjoyment levels falling over time, due to the rise in ‘sadvertising’ and a decline in the number of ads using humour.”

“What concerns me most is that much of the award-winning creative that we analysed is unlikely to have a strong brand effect in the short term, let alone the long term. As we see in the analysis, there’s no reason why advertisers shouldn’t aspire to winning a Cannes Lions for creativity, while also delivering brand impact.”