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    The Gift of Attention

    Now that the New Year has started, the end-of-year gifts are already behind us. One such gift for marketers was the attention-related data presented by Prof. Karen Nelson-Field in her specialized column in December last year.

    At SmartAdd, we place particular importance on the value of the attention economy. Therefore, Prof. Field’s up-to-date research is always on our radar and we want to take its findings with us into 2022. The data that got us particularly excited includes a snapshot of 20,000 impressions across four countries including seven popular platforms (a combination of social and general web data). Check our summary of Prof. Nelson-Field’s findings here:

    • Attention data collection. Prof. Nelson-Field’s team collects attention data by collecting facial footage in real-time from cameras on Mobile, TV and PC. This attention data can tell whether a person is looking directly at an ad (active attention), looking at the mobile screen/second screening but not at the ad directly (passive attention) or not looking at all/not in the room (non-attention).
    • The gap between viewable and viewed: expectations vs. reality.  Get ready for the scary part: Around 75% of ads that you have paid for, against the currency you trust, don’t deliver the value you believe them to have. As Prof. Nelson-Field says, it is scary because you are about see the real difference between assumed human-engaged impressions and actual human-engaged impressions.
    • Explanation of the paradox: At an aggregate level, 70% of all impressions are MRC compliant (i.e., 50% pixels and 2 seconds on video, and 50% and 1 second on display). Your expectations are that this 70% delivers human eyeballs to your advertising. Here is the scary part. Of all impressions you are served:
    • 44% are MRC compliant but get insignificant active attention (avg. half second).
    • 9% are MRC compliant but get zero attention.
    • 17% are both MRC compliant and get active attention for at least 2 seconds.
    • Thinking about it a different way, of the impressions you have technically paid for (when you buy against MRC standards):
    • 63% get insignificant active attention (avg. half second).
    • 13% get zero attention.
    • 24% get active attention for at least 2 seconds.
    • Platform and format: choose wisely. The research shows the ratio between viewable and viewed differs significantly by platform and format.This tells us that attention and viewability are not the same. If they were, the metrics would move together – they don’t; the ratio between viewable and viewed would be systematic across platforms and formats – it isn’t. Viewability is not a universal metric, because the underlying attentive return differs so drastically by platform and format. It also tells us that you cannot force attention, while ‘viewable’ can be actively avoided.
    • Conclusion: Viewability analytics can’t tell you how much attention has been paid, they can tell you whether an ad has been served. Attention models can’t tell you how much attention has been paid if they have little to no human attention data powering them.

    Novelty Media, via SmartAdd, offers a hugely impactful digital viewing experience as it utilizes unique instances to deliver content, thus grabbing audience’s undivided attention. We guarantee 100% Share of Voice, 100% exclusivity on screen and 100% in-view impressions by design. SmartAdd is the ultimate media channel redefining the rules of the game by meeting mobile subscribers where they are – at their smartphones. Keep following our Marketing Bites to find out more about our solution.