Cracking the code on mobile ad effectiveness - Havas Media Group and Sky Media

in News
on Friday November 14, 2014 @ 2:25

We don’t normally post press releases but this one’s special as it’s the result of a very exciting mobile ad effectiveness project we had the pleasure to help out with..

Birds Eye Big Snack mobile ad


Brand awareness up 54% after mobile consumers view ads from Nationwide, Domino's and Birds Eye*

Havas Media Group and Sky Media have joined forces to research the best ways of measuring mobile advertising effectiveness by trialling cutting edge methodologies.

Nationwide, Domino’s and Birds Eye took part in the research and worked alongside research agencies Differentology and On Device Research, who are specialists in the field of mobile measurement.


The increased importance of mobile to consumers means that it is more important than ever for brands like ours to effectively interact through this medium in a way that fully utilises the unique benefits mobile can offer. The results of the study have provided us with additional insight into how we can further expand our approach to mobile.

Alex Bennett, Senior Manager, Digital Marketing, Nationwide

The research included two tests which analysed real world ad campaigns in a live environment and two lab tests. The study enabled testing of different mobile ad formats not widely served at present. The Sky Sports, Football Score Centre and Sky News mobile phone apps housed the advertising placements.

The research shows that mobile is an effective medium for building brands. It highlights that those who make the best use of the creative space by making ads more intriguing, fun and interactive will achieve greater standout, and generate the best results.


Key findings include:

  • Mobile advertising works hard: Combined brand perception across all three brands showed an uplift of 13% from the non-exposed to the exposed group of respondents. Furthermore combined brand consideration increased by 9% for those exposed.
  • Native is a star performer: Native mobile ads are considered more relevant and engaging than standard banner ads. They reduce irritation yet still retain strong cut-through levels.
  • Mindset matters: A consumer’s mood and mindset can drive message absorption and enhance brand effects. Those taking action increased by 70% for those who were more enthusiastic and excited at the point of ad exposure to the Birds Eye banner.
  • Exciting formats deliver cut-through: Mobile formats and creatives that were fun and generated intrigue, achieved a greater cut-through. Furthermore, those with interactive elements were seen as more engaging, relevant and more likely to drive action than non-interative formats.

Nationwide and Domino’s took part in a control and exposed effectiveness test using a new methodology from On Device Research. This approach provides a solution to the challenge of being unable to cookie track on mobile, whilst still testing brand effectiveness in a live environment.

Birds Eye carried out a control and exposed effectiveness test in a lab environment rather than a live setting. This enabled native mobile ads, currently not widely served, to be tested, and also allowed for creative diagnostics testing of a number of different mobile formats.


Research into mobile effectiveness has never been more important than now. This study highlights that brands can utilise mobile advertising as part of their communications strategy to influence both ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ brand metrics, moving consumers along their brand journey.

Sorcha Garduce, Digital Insight Director, Havas Media

Other findings include

  • Mobile display increased brand salience. Domino’s saw a 25% uplift in agreement that ‘Domino’s is a brand for people like me’.
  • Purchase consideration for Birds Eye increased by 7%.
  • 72% of those exposed to the Domino’s mobile display ad claimed that they took some form of action as a result of exposure (e.g. downloading the app or ordering a pizza).

“Standard mobile advertising formats clearly work, but brands should consider more advanced, high impact and native formats to produce even greater engagement. This research is evidence that exciting new format opportunities in the right environment can deliver vastly enhanced brand metrics,” said David Fisher, Head of Futures at Sky Media.

* The 54% increase in awareness is based on a live test environment for Domino's and Nationwide ad placements. Birds Eye ad placements were tested in a lab environment.


Why does this all matter?

Smartphone penetration in the UK is expected to reach around 75% of the adult population by the end of 2014. Tablet penetration is expected to hit 50%. Half of time spent online in the UK is estimated to be on mobile devices. The lion’s share will be via apps rather than browsers.

There is now a huge amount of impressive mobile consumption statistics across our industry demonstrating just how powerful these small devices have become for consumers and brands. Although there has been significant growth in mobile advertising expenditure, a lack of insight in some areas has acted as a barrier to some.

Being unable to cookie track on mobile devices has proved a challenge making measuring mobile effectiveness very difficult up to now.

The research took place between June and August 2014 and over 2,600 mobile app users took part in both the live and lab tests.

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