‘Emotional’ ads will lead to more sales, study suggests

Television advertisements which elicit a strong emotional response will deliver an increase in sales, a new study by Professor Karen Nelson-Field, commissioned by ThinkTV, has suggested.

The findings, which come as part of the Benchmark Series for ThinkTV by Nelson-Field, revealed ads which generate a strong reaction – be it positive or negative – create 16% more attention than those ads which create weak reactions.

It also found strong reactions to advertising have a 30% greater sales impact than ads which generate minimal response.

The study included more than 140 consumers viewing 15 television advertisements and was based around strong emotions including hilarity, inspiration, astonishment, exhilaration, disgust, sadness, shock and anger, while weak reactions included emotions such as amusement, calmness, surprise, happiness, discomfort, boredom, irritation and frustration.

Nelson-Field said the study shed light on the role of emotion in generating attention and short-term sales strength.

“When TV ads elicit strong reactions they will deliver more sales but they are however difficult to create. It is important to recognise that getting your ad seen still plays a more important role: low emotion ads will still gain more attention when distributed on more visible platforms than a highly emotional ad that can be barely seen,” she said.

Kim Portrate, CEO of ThinkTV said the work was an important next step in helping Think TV’s mission.

“The timing of Karen’s latest findings couldn’t be better as we head into the Christmas selling season and brands seek to stir our emotions with their seasonal ad campaigns,” Portrate said.

“We already know that TV is an experience and the complete story – telling media that captures the hearts of minds of Australians. It affords brands the time and space to create a beginning, middle and end, build tension and resolution, triumph or loss – and the ads are shown against premium quality content.”


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.