The media marketplace is more fragmented than ever before as consumers divide their time among a bigger variety of connected devices and content platforms, which include social media and streaming services. This complexity challenges marketers to better understand how people pay attention to advertising.

“What we have been searching for is really a way to gauge the quality of impressions and their ability to keep a consumer’s attention, to allow us to convey that message more effectively,” Mars’ Ron Amram, senior director of global media for snack-food giant Mars, said in this interview with Beet.TV contributor Rob Williams.

“In an older world and maybe a TV-led world, all impressions were quite similar, but in the digital world, they’re not,” Amram said. “We need another variable outside of reach and cost, and that’s really to measure the quality of the impression. Attention can be that powerful measure to decipher which impressions are more valuable than others.”

Deeper Insights

While marketers have tools to verify that an impression was delivered, they also want some assurance that their advertising had a desired effect.

“As prices have fragmented and as the quality of media has kind of really evolved, it’s just not enough to say the impression was delivered or not,” Amram said. “There are some really efficient media vehicles out there and expensive media vehicles out there. If we can put an effectiveness measure on that price, it’s an opportunity for us to really weigh the quality and the cost in a way that’s more relative and valuable.”

Insights into how consumers engage with advertising, along with the surrounding content that provides context for a positive experience, are especially useful to marketers. Eye-tracking studies can help to understand where viewers fixate on an advertisement, and whether the creative needs to be adjusted.

“We use pretest measures to see if that with eye recognition and things like that, if our creative is holding the consumer’s attention,” Amram said. “We also want to do it from a contextual standpoint. Is the media that we’re advertising in allowing us to hold their attention?”

You’re watching “Convergent TV at a Moment of Change,” a Beet.TV Leadership Series presented by Nexxen. For more videos from this series, please visit this page.