Study Used Neuroscience to Measure Consumer’s Unconscious Response to Brands

NEW YORK – December 21, 2018 – As the advertising industry has previously noted, ads served on Connected TV devices (CTV) tend to decrease ad overload, and according to a new study, they also create more positive emotions and increase engagement for viewers across all age groups as compared to Linear TV (LTV). The study by MAGNA, the intelligence, investment and innovation unit within IPG Mediabrands and IPG Media Lab, the media futures and advisory arm of IPG Mediabrands, “Engaging the Mind: How Consumers Really Respond to Connected TV and Linear TV Ads” explores consumer engagement with and brand lift generated by short-form video content on CTV compared to traditional ads on LTV.

The study employed advanced neurometric technology to measure participants’ unconscious responses to ads served on CTV and LTV. Eye engagement was measured via eye-tracking glasses and brain pulses from Electroencephalography (EEG) were used to assess emotional arousal and cognitive load. Participants were pre-recruited based on their media consumption habits and participated in an in-lab media experience.

CTV ads far outperformed LTV, generating a retention rate 3.8X higher even when controlling for attention. Additional key points of the study include:

  • Consumers are painfully aware of higher ad load on LTV and find that the number of ads on LTV crosses the line – but not on CTV
  • The same ads are generating more positive emotion when viewed on CTV
  • CTV creates more emotional ad experiences than LTV among younger and middle aged audiences, who tend to have an intense negative reaction to LTV
  • LTV ads risk boredom in some age groups while CTV does not


“Video consumption continues to thrive and it’s no surprise consumers prefer ads on Connected TVs as compared to Linear TV, because of the content variety, user control and relatively uncluttered environment” said David Cohen, President, North America, MAGNA. “Consumers like to view ads on their own terms, and would prefer less, shorter ads in their entertainment content. Serving ads in Connected TV environments ensures a stronger emotional response and allows marketers to connect to a wider audience than Linear TV does.”

Read the full report here



MAGNA is the centralized IPG Mediabrands resource that develops intelligence, investment and innovation strategies for agency teams and clients. We utilize our insights, forecasts and strategic relationships to provide clients with a competitive marketplace advantage.

MAGNA harnesses the aggregate power of all IPG media investments to create leverage in the market, negotiate preferred pricing and secure premium inventory to drive maximum value for our clients. The MAGNA Investment and Innovation teams architect go-to-market investment strategies across all channels including linear television, print, digital and programmatic on behalf of IPG clients. The team focuses on the use of emerging media opportunities, as well as data and technology-enabled solutions to drive optimal client performance and business results.

MAGNA Intelligence has set the industry standard for more than 60 years by predicting the future of media value. The MAGNA Intelligence team produces more than 40 annual reports on audience trends, media spend and market demand as well as ad effectiveness.


About IPG Media Lab

Part of the Interpublic network, the IPG Media Lab identifies and researches innovations and trends that will change the media landscape and how brands engage with their audiences. Since 2006, the Lab has worked with our clients and with industry partners who can help them best adapt to disruptive change. Its expertise, resources and consulting services also help to inform the learnings, strategies and business outcomes of all Interpublic agencies. For more information, please visit or follow @ipglab.


Media Contact:

Scott Berwitz

IPG Mediabrands

SVP, Global Corporate Communications