Warc Advertising Research 2012: Emotional advertising, neuroscience and new qual trends

Cila Warncke

Research is fundamental to effective marketing – and getting great insights remains a key concern of marketers. That's why the annual Warc Ad Research conference, held in London in September 2012, gathered ten speakers from the fields of advertising and academia to offer insight into the latest learnings in ad research.

Dr Robert Heath from the University of Bath School of Management, opened the conference by making the case for emotional versus rational advertising. He noted that people have two powerful tools to filter out rational messages: perceptual filtering – where they ignore the message – or counter-argument, where they absorb it but refute it through logic. Emotional messages can effectively slip through these filters, noted Dr Heath, citing the case of UK mobile service provider O2's advertising. Despite not having any rational differentiation (e.g. on price, call quality, etc) it went from the UK's fourth-ranked mobile brand in 2000 to market leader in 2005 on the power of an emotive advertising campaign.