Google isn’t making enough money with YouTube, CEO Eric Schmidt often complains. So now it’s bringing in the EEG brain scanners.
Google (GOOG) and ad agency MediaVest hooked a group of people to the machines to measure how their skin, eyes and brains reacted to YouTube’s InVideo ads, which are the overlays that sometimes pop up along the bottom edge of a YouTube video frame. In a complete non-surprise, Google and MediaVest came to the following three conclusions after the study, reports ZDnet:
- InVideo overlay ads are compelling
- InVideo overlay ads add to user experience
- InVideo overlay ads improve positive brand response
We don’t begrudge people just trying to sell some ads, but this hokey pseudo-science is silly. Friends of ours in the agency business agree. One took a whack at MediaVest, pointing out that it’s hardly surprising that brains and eyes would react to sights, sounds and movement. “What people are really concerned about is what actions the ads are causing people to take.”
Says another interactive agency source: “Seems like this is just more fuzzy maths in an ever-changing equation.” He said Google’s study left him with more questions than answers:
This is interesting, but I’m not sure what it will really tell us. Is it quality of the ad unit, or the impact of it in the environment and content that it’s running within? The only way to see if this has any validity is to measure the consumer’s behaviour after exposure — did they visit a site, register for or download something, make purchase? Was the effectiveness of the ad increased after a certain number of exposures, or sequence of other messages up to the point that they saw the video, and then that had an incremental lift on their post-exposure behaviour?
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