Measuring Brand Effectiveness with Nielsen’s David Brandt

david brandt

“The brand is everything. It triggers consumers’ values. When they’re shopping it makes them say ‘I want that one.’ It’s intuition.” A lot of people talk about branding and advertising effectiveness but David Brandt has a career that can back up all of that talk. As the EVP of Advertising Effectiveness Strategy at Nielsen, he’s responsible for their work on neuroscience and measuring brand effectiveness. We talked about all of this on this week’s episode of the On Brand podcast.

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About David Brandt

David Brandt is a 35+ year veteran of the market research industry with extensive experience in measuring ad effectiveness. At Nielsen he is responsible for advancing their thought leadership in this area including enhancing the Nielsen Neuroscience offer and advancing and integrating Nielsen’s end-to-end advertising effectiveness capabilities within the Marketing Effectiveness group.

Prior to joining Nielsen, he was with Ipsos OTX where he was responsible for innovation in the areas of neuroscience and socialized research. He came to that role with the acquisition by Ipsos of OTX.

David has built several different advertising measurement systems including the Next*TV system for Ipsos-ASI and is the architect of the Copy Effect Index — the first measurement built by linking pre-test results to marketing mix models. He also built the first online display ad testing pre-testing system and the first pre-testing system for multi-platform advertising. For the last 7 years he has been involved in the application of neuroscience to ad effectiveness measurements.

Episode Highlights

We have a branding problem. David kicked off the show by sharing an alarming stat from Nielsen’s data. “Three out of four people are unable to identify the sponsor of the ad though they recall the ad itself.” This is the classic problem with Super Bowl ads. We remember clever ads but rarely who created them. What can we do about this? “Hire a really good agency,” David laughingly said. But seriously …

What can marketers do differently? Sometimes we focus too much on media — the ad delivery system. “What gets lost is what you’re delivering — your message. Is it consistent?” We don’t have to suck at this. It’s a discipline. “Look at Volvo. We know they’re about safety because of the years of ads.”

How can we measure branding? While there are any number of metrics you can use including, of course, financial performance, Nielsen measures brand equity through the value customers place on the brand. “The brand is everything. It triggers consumers’ values. When they’re shopping it makes them say ‘I want that one.’ It’s intuition. Those connected with a brand are less susceptible to competitive couponing and offers.”

What challenges do marketers face in the new year ahead? “Fragmentation of media. The movement from TV to smartphones and tablets will continue.” In terms of technology and measurement, David and his team will be working on multi-touch attribution modeling to better understand and measure the impact of fragmented media on customers at the individual level.

What’s ahead for Nielsen in the new year? Nielsen will continue to work on advancing their commitment to total audience measurement. In the new year, David will be focusing on how we as marketers can integrate all of this information. When we connect these digital dots, we can “build a more comprehensive story on what’s impacting the customer.”

What brand has made David smile recently? David gave us three. First, the Amazon brand makes he and his wife smile as it keeps them sane during the holiday season by allowing them to stay home and avoid the crazy shopping season. He also loves the satirical DIRECTV ads sending up a fictional cable merger.

Finally, he pointed us to Robert Heath’s article in The Guardian talking about the tradition of running Christmas ads in the UK.

To learn more about David Brandt and Nielsen, check out the Nielsen website, specifically the Neuroscience section.

As We Wrap …

Before we go, I want to flip the microphone around to our community … Kerry O’Shea Gorgone did a great round-up of 2016 predictions from expert marketers like Jay Baer, Mark Schaefer, and Gini Dietrich (and me!) on a recent episode of the Marketing Smarts podcast. Check it out!

Did you hear something you liked on this episode or another? Do you have a question you’d like our guests to answer? Let me know on Twitter using the hashtag #OnBrandPodcast and you may just hear your thoughts here on the show.

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Until next week, I’ll see you on the Internet!