(SALES) The Eye Versus The Ear


Pro-digital marketing agency Mediative conducted an eye-tracking study to validate how consumers notice display ads on Web pages.

Participants of mixed ages were assigned certain search tactics, and the researchers were able to generate heat maps showing the length of time spent looking at various parts of the page.

The ads served included skyscrapers, leader boards, and big box ads.

Only 16.6% of the ads served to the study control group were “viewed” — and to be viewed only 50% of the pixels had to be viewed for one second or more. The percentage actually read would obviously be lower than the percentage viewed.

It’s time radio account executives learned how to articulate the powerful difference between intrusive audio messages versus passive visual or text messages.

Dr. Elizabeth Loftus of the University of Washington, a researcher and author of more than 100 articles and eight books on how the human mind works, said, “In many ways, the ear is superior to the eye. There is evidence from controlled laboratory studies that when you present a list of words to people and you present it either auditorily (verbally or pre-recorded) or present it visually (on slides or text) people remember more words if they hear the words than if they read the words.”

Consumers can choose to read or ignore passive display ads in print, online, or on their mobile devices, depending upon the relevance of the message, and where they are in the purchase cycle.

Intrusive audio ads on the other hand, reach and influence consumers regardless of where they are in the purchase cycle, creating a hard-to-change pre-need perception for the advertiser as the consumer gets closer to the purchase end of the cycle and begins their passive media search.

Of course, your clients need to have that visual online presence when consumers begin their search, but more importantly, they need to have established a pre-need preference for their brand with intrusive radio to trump any and all SEO tactics.

Local advertisers can learn a lot from larger national advertisers who have huge research budgets to determine what advertising works best or gives them the highest return on investment.

Successful marketers like Home Depot, T-Mobile, and GEICO continue to use radio as part of their media mix.

And our local TOMA (Top of Mind Awareness) surveys prove that advertisers with audio ads as part of the advertising mix consistently have higher TOMA scores than advertisers with no audio advertising.


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