Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Small changes in ads make them more memorable

Date:
December 5, 2012
Source:
University of Delaware
Summary:
A change as small as moving the logo in an ad makes you more likely to buy, a new study has found.

A study by a University of Delaware marketing professor finds that small changes in ads make them more memorable.
Credit: Image provided by Stewart Shapiro

Look at the two depictions in the image shown, how many differences do you find? If you answered just one, you are correct. One is all marketers need to make you more likely to buy, according to new research by University of Delaware Marketing Professor Stewart Shapiro.

One change makes the same ad more memorable. Shapiro's new study in the Journal of Consumer Research argues that by subtly changing an ad that appears many times, you increase the likelihood consumers will remember the product.

"The question is, if you're a marketer, should you always run the exact same print ad, or should they run slightly different versions of it?" Shapiro said.

If you've seen an ad before, it may be cataloged and stored somewhere in your brain, even if you don't consciously realize it. When you see the same ad again, your brain recognizes it with little to no effort. Shapiro and Nielsen contend that if something changes slightly in the ad, for instance, the location of the logo, your brain needs to devote more energy to it. While you are likely not aware of the extra effort, it helps cement the ad in your mind.

"You wonder 'why does this feels familiar to me?' People often times attribute that to the fact that they must like it," Shapiro said.

In search of proof, Shapiro, along with University of Arizona professor Jesper H. Nielsen, conducted some experiments. Participants were asked to watch as a series of nine print ads appeared on a computer screen. The loop ran four times. It contained three ads where the logo moved; the others remained constant. After some time passed, participants ranked their preferences on 12 ads (6 from the show, 6 added as controls). Their response showed preference for the ads with the logo location change.

A subsequent similar experiment gave participants the option to choose a thank you gift for participating. Their selection contained three brands within the same product category (gum, marmalade, chocolate or shampoo). One brand choice was a control and two were from ads they had viewed; one ad remained the same while the other had a brand image location change. The products with the altered ads were 19 percent more likely to be chosen.

Shapiro notes this strategy seems to work best with low involvement products, items that consumers don't typically spend much time considering. Often these are inexpensive and disposable items such as candy.

Marketers' creativity may work again them in selling these low involvement products. Companies spend millions each year creating advertising campaigns where a theme is repeated in different ads. Shapiro's study contends that more might not be better. He says the impact created by slight changes disappears when too many elements of the ad are altered, as they are in campaigns.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Delaware. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Stewart A. Shapiro, Jesper H. Nielsen. What the Blind Eye Sees: Incidental Change Detection as a Source of Perceptual Fluency. Journal of Consumer Research, 2012; 000 DOI: 10.1086/667852

Cite This Page:

University of Delaware. "Small changes in ads make them more memorable." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 December 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121205090921.htm>.
University of Delaware. (2012, December 5). Small changes in ads make them more memorable. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121205090921.htm
University of Delaware. "Small changes in ads make them more memorable." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121205090921.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The new sci-fi thriller "Lucy" is making people question whether we really use all our brainpower. But, as scientists have insisted for years, we do. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do Obese Women Have 'Food Learning Impairment'?

Do Obese Women Have 'Food Learning Impairment'?

Newsy (July 18, 2014) Yale researchers tested 135 men and women, and it was only obese women who were deemed to have "impaired associative learning." Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Does Mixing Alcohol and Energy Drinks Boost Urge To Drink?

Does Mixing Alcohol and Energy Drinks Boost Urge To Drink?

Newsy (July 18, 2014) A new study suggests that mixing alcohol with energy drinks makes you want to keep the party going. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pot Cooking Class Teaches Responsible Eating

Pot Cooking Class Teaches Responsible Eating

AP (July 18, 2014) Following the nationwide trend of eased restrictions on marijuana use, pot edibles are growing in popularity. One Boston-area cooking class is teaching people how to eat pot responsibly. (July 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

More Coverage


In the Blink of an Eye: Distracted Consumers Are Most Likely to Remember Ads With Subtle Variations

Oct. 22, 2012 Consumers are more likely to remember an ad they’ve seen repeatedly if one element in the ad changes location from one exposure to the next, according to a new ... read more
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins