LONDON: In what is claimed to be the most extensive project yet undertaken to identify the brand-supportive power of individual consumer contact points, ZenithOptimedia on Tuesday unveiled the first public results of its Touchpoints ROI tracker.

Based on over 300,000 consumer interviews across thirty-four countries covering more than 4,000 brands, Touchpoint results offer marketers a claimed first-time opportunity to compare the power of all major communications channels across a variety of consumer groups, brand categories and regions.

It identifies and quantifies the value of every point of contact for a category and its brands, examining the role of each contact point in building brand preference and purchase intent.

All forms of consumer contact are measured from mass media to one-to-one, word of mouth, sponsorship, events and the internet.

A snapshot of the Touchpoints database predictably reveals the growing power of the internet as a key marketing vehicle. More surprising it also reveals that the influence of internet marketing grows as consumers get older.

Similarly, ZO's research underscores the power of word of mouth, showing that recommendations from friends and families have the greatest influence on brand choice of all Touchpoints - on average 22% higher than TV advertising. 

On a regional basis, the influence of marketing contacts and the level of overall brand recall is much higher in Asia Pacific than in North America or Europe.

For example, TV advertising is 20% more influential in Asia Pacific than in North America and internet banners are 30% more influential in Asia Pacific than in Europe.

Zenith also claims that the survey doesn't only identify the brand-supportive power of individual Touchpoints, it also reveals how much harder some of these can work in combination - key knowledge when planning integrated communications.

Touchpoints has already been harnessed by a number of major marketers, among them HP, Lloyds TSB and Verizon.

Data sourced from ZenithOptimedia (UK); additional content by WARC staff