Advertising- attention research

“Advertising- attention research has come a long way since Nixon (1924) hid behind a curtain and painstakingly observed eye movements of consumers who were paging through a magazine with print advertisements.” (Pieters & Wedel 2004)

Attention is one of the most important faculties of the brain, because it filters the environment for aspects that are worth noticing and considering. If no one knows about a product, no one will buy it.

But how can we find out, whether an advertisement, a certain product or a design draws attention among all the other stimuli we are simultaneously exposed to?

Luckily this is not a guessing game anymore as it was for Nixon, because our brain scanning technology tells us not only if a specific marketing material caught the eye, but also whether it grasped attention.


Using EEG or fMRI it is also possible to identify specific aspects of your marketing material or product design which grasp attention.


Unattractiveness is a guarantee of failure!

“Show me an ad or brochure that doesn’t provoke any emotion, and I can guarantee you that it doesn’t work.” (Perry Marshall)

So advertisement, whether print, radio or TV, should always appeal to the consumers emotions. Whether positive or negative emotions are evoked is not as important as the fact that emotions are evoked at all. There is nothing worse than being boring. Boringness is a guarantee for failure, because the product cannot stand a chance against the vast varieties of interesting and exciting products.

The good news is: we can tell you whether or not your product evokes positive or negative emotions (EEG) or whether these emotions are based for example on joy, desire, lust, trust, familiarity, anger, fear or disgust (fMRI). Additionally we can tell you which scenes in a commercial or which aspects of a print ad or a design evoke positive or negative emotions .


implicit memory

There is a common belief, that if an advertised product cannot be recalled, the efficiency is zero. This, however, is only half the truth.
There are two types of memory that influence the buying behavior of consumers: explicit and implicit memory.

Information which is explicitly remembered includes for example ad slogans, product benefits, and website addresses. Implicit memory however might come into play when other stimuli in the environment remind you of something. So in other words: Explicit memory involves consciously retrievable facts, while implicit memory involves unconscious retention.


The following examples show the importance of implicit memory:

(1) a consumer might decide to buy a brand of shampoo from a television ad despite not consciously knowing why,
(2) or the consumer might develop an unconscious affinity for a certain brand despite not knowing specific facts about it.

However, the above examples show, that implicit memory has a huge influence on the buying behavior as well. The Neuromarketing Labs can determine the efficiency of specific marketing materials before they are applied and thus a lot of money for air time, new design manufacturing, printing of ads, etc. can be invested efficiently.



Classical questionnaire or focus group methods can only access explicit memory.

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Phone: +49 7191 34028-30


The Neuromarketing Labs GmbH
Stuttgart Office

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71546 Aspach



Executive Board:  

Prof. Dr. Kai-Markus Müller


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Amtsgericht Stuttgart

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HRB 765481


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