Attention metrics valuable, ‘but not a silver bullet’, says IAB Australia

Too much attention is being placed on ad attention metrics in isolation, according to IAB Australia’s new Ad Attention Measurement Landscape Report.

The report was put together “offering the largest collation of information and perspectives on ad attention measurement available in the Australian marketplace”, seeking to “cut through the hype” to provide a balanced look at the in-use techniques for measuring attention in advertising.

The report highlights a correlation between “higher ad attention and business outcomes”, but states that ad attention measurement is not a silver bullet and that marketers still need to use to review a range of metrics to fully understand the holistic impact of their advertising investments”.

IAB Australia said it believes while attention measurement is an important input to understanding advertising impact, “it is not yet ready to be treated as an industry standard ‘currency’.”

This is largely down to a low level of understanding of the methodologies and metrics in use, adding that no definitive agreement or consistency in the attention metrics are being used by respondents.

Gai Le Roy, IAB Australia CEO said: “There are many ingredients needed for effective advertising and the recipe needed for success will differ for every advertiser and every campaign. Measuring how all the pieces of the effectiveness puzzle fit together as well as influence each other is an area ongoing investigation that needs to be constantly reviewed as the ad market, media options, consumer behaviour and the marketing mix constantly evolves.”

IAB Australia’s Gai Le Roy

Natalie Stanbury, IAB Australia research director said: “The IAB and the Ad Effectiveness Council are excited by the development in the attention space and look forward to a healthy evolution of use of these metrics to help marketers increase the effectiveness of their advertising investment. We encourage brands, agencies, and media owners to start experimenting with ad attention measurement to understand the nuances across brands, format, position, context, and cost.”

Many major media owners have undertaken studies into attention metrics over the past 12 months, as the industry increasingly attempts to get to grips with the emerging measurement. This has included Seven, Nine Entertainment Co., and QMS, with all major holding companies also now signing up to integrate Amplified Intelligence’s attentionPLAN into planning systems.

On last week’s Mumbrellacast, Nine’s chief sales officer, Michael Stephenson said for attention to become meaningful for brands and advertisers, “you’ll need to be able to optimise campaigns in real time against some form of attention currency”.

“I think there is a place for attention to become, another tool by which advertisers and agencies can look to extract more value from media owners, in terms of maximizing the value of the audience that we have. So that I’m heavily invested in, but what that looks like, I’m not quite sure right now.”

“But we are investing a lot of time internally to understand what it could mean for brands and how advertisers can find really valuable pockets of audience within our framework of platforms.”

The report itself was prepared by the IAB Ad Effectiveness Council, which includes stakeholders from across the industry, including media owners, data agencies, media agencies, research companies, tech vendors, and advertisers. The report was a collaboration of Council members and participating ad attention vendors.

It also includes an overview of ad attention measurement vendors in the local market.

Developments in the attention economy are providing marketers with additional insights on their advertising investments but too much attention is being placed on ad attention metrics in isolation according to IAB Australia’s Ad Attention Measurement Landscape Report. Offering the largest collation of information and perspectives on ad attention measurement available in the Australian marketplace, the Report cuts through the hype to provide balanced information on the emerging techniques for measuring advertising attention, helping marketers explore the various methodologies and identify which will work best for their activity and business scale.

The report also states that 82% of ad agencies have indicated intentions to measure attention on campaigns over the coming 12 months, with 55% saying they “know at least a fair amount about the concept”. Further, it found currently attention measurement is largely used by media agencies to gain insights for planning, with 64% of agency respondents intending to use ad attention insights for media planning in the next year, with 76% using insights from studies publishing in market by agencies or media owners to inform their media planning.

IAB Ad Effectiveness Council members include Aerion, Bench, Carsales, Dentsu, DoubleVerify, Ebay, Experian, Google, IAS, Insighten, Ipsos, Kantar, Lifesight, Meta, Milton Data, Mutiny Group, Nine Entertainment, PHD, Pinterest, Playgroundxyz, Publicis, REA Group, Ryvalmedia, SambaTV, SevenWest Media, Similar Web, TotallyAwesome, Trip Advisor and IAB Australia.

IAB Australia said participating ad attention measurement vendors also worked with it to share details on their methodologies and approaches including eye-tracking panel measurement vendors: Adelaide, Amplified Intelligence, Eye Square, Lumen and Playground xyz; neuroscience measurement vendor Neuro-Insight; and ad technology measurement vendors Double Verify, IAS and Oracle Advertising.


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