scispace - formally typeset
SciSpace - Your AI assistant to discover and understand research papers | Product Hunt

Journal ArticleDOI

A Comparison of Three Interactive Television AD Formats

01 Sep 2009-Journal of Interactive Advertising (Routledge)-Vol. 10, Iss: 1, pp 14-34

TL;DR: The results suggest that the effectiveness of iTV ads should be measured by their interaction rate rather than the much smaller response rate, and iTV advertisers should consider ways to maximize interaction and response rates.

AbstractThis study explores the effects of interacting with three current interactive television (iTV) ad formats, using an Australian audience panel. Interaction with iTV ads has positive effects on awareness and net positive thoughts, which increase purchase intentions compared with the influence of regular ads. The telescopic format represents the best format, likely because it makes the most of the entertaining possibilities of iTV by offering additional long-form video; its superior performance cannot be explained readily by self-selection effects. The results suggest that the effectiveness of iTV ads should be measured by their interaction rate rather than the much smaller response rate, and iTV advertisers should consider ways to maximize interaction and response rates.

Topics: Interactive television (51%)

Summary (7 min read)

Introduction

  • The digitization of television introduces new capabilities to television viewing experiences, including interactive formats for advertising (Cauberghe and De Pelsmacker 2006).
  • Because the interactivity is so simple, the accompanying messages fit easily on banners superimposed over the regular ad, which plays out normally underneath them.
  • Again, this format is widely used on Sky in the United Kingdom.
  • Intuitively, interactors should be more interested in the product but after interacting also be more aware of the advertised brand, with more favorable attitudes and intentions toward it, than non-interactors.
  • If interaction with iTV ads has positive effects on awareness and persuasion, iTV ads could be designed and tested to maximize these effects and thus occupy an even more important role in the advertising mix.

LITERATURE REVIEW

  • Cauberghe and De Pelsmacker (2006, p. 23) define interactive digital television as "a group of technologies that gives users the possibility to take control over their TV experience, enabling interactivity with the content.".
  • The key term in this definition is "interactivity.".
  • The authors develop seven research questions about what drives viewers to interact with iTV ads and what effects might result from interactivity.

Product Category Involvement

  • For advertisers, one of the most useful aspects of iTV ads is their ability to "cherry pick" the viewers most interested in buying the advertised product.
  • This capability would spread the potential benefits of interacting to those viewers who could be most affected by it, that is, those not already sold on the advertised brand by information they already have.
  • These findings suggest that though there is undoubtedly a positive correlation between product category involvement and the extent of interactivity, minimal interactivity, such as pressing a button on a TV remote control, might occur at a low threshold of involvement.

Effects of Interactivity on Awareness and Persuasion

  • Research into interactivity and its effects has been plagued by vagueness and inconsistency in the definition of what, exactly, "interactivity" is (Bucy and Tao 2007; Rafaeli and Ariel 2007).
  • Ratings of perceived interactivity appear to measure the distance between the current interaction and the "gold standard" for interactivity: face-to-face conversation (Rafaeli and Ariel 2007; cf. Bucy and Tao 2007).
  • Like a persuasive salesperson, interactive stimuli can identify and answer objections, increase the expected value of desired outcomes, bolster the customer's belief the outcomes are possible, and adapt goals to the stage of the behavior-change process (Cassell, Jackson, and Cheuvront 1998).
  • In their third research question, the authors consider whether this new rule of thumb applies across iTV ads generally: RQ3: Generating more thoughts about the ad is unlikely to encourage buying if all these thoughts are negative.
  • Usually, an excess of positive thoughts is summarized by a positive attitude toward the ad; in the absence of any prior information about the brand, a positive attitude toward the ad generally is predictive of a favorable brand attitude and purchase intentions (Brown and Stayman 1992; MacKenzie and Lutz 1989).

Potential Differences Between iTV Ad Formats

  • As well as testing for a generally positive effect of interaction with iTV ads on awareness and persuasion, the authors are interested in testing the relative effectiveness of the three main iTV ad formats.
  • But at higher levels of available interactivity, the advantages of access to the right pieces of information may come at the cost of more time and effort (Rogers 1986), as well as the need to split resources across two tasks: comprehension and navigation (Yeung, Jin, and Sweller 1997).
  • First, the DAL experience is not "as engaging and genuinely interactive as web advertising" (McLachlan 2009, p. 28).
  • An excess of negative over positive thoughts will generate a negative attitude to the ad and therefore a less favorable brand attitude and purchase intentions, especially if the brand is unfamiliar (Brown and Stayman 1992), as all the brands the authors test are.

METHOD

  • The authors use a controlled experiment to test the effects of interaction with three currently employed iTV ad formats, using an audience panel recruited through newspaper advertisements and direct mail from the general public in an Australian city.
  • This balance of interests helps ensure the independence of the research.

SAMPLE

  • This study was conducted in Australia to take advantage of a well-equipped audience research laboratory with eight years of experience in developing and testing interactive TV applications.
  • But Australia is culturally similar to the United States (e.g., on Hofstede's [1980] individualism-collectivism index, Australia scores 90 [#2], and the United States scores 91 [#1]), and the main language in both countries is English.
  • They were told that because the show had been recorded in the United States, it included U.S. ads in the ad breaks.
  • Any effects the authors observe cannot be explained by prior exposure (Campbell and Keller 2003).
  • Participants were invited to undertake a one-hour study in return for a AUD$20 department store voucher.

EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN

  • For all three iTV ad formats, the direct response offer (the "call to action," or CTA) is a banner ad superimposed over the regular ad.
  • On exiting the DAL, interactors returned to where they had left the TV content, just like viewers in the telescopic condition, which reproduced delayed viewing with a DVR.
  • Participants in all four conditions saw three test ads: two product test ads, one for a high- and one for a low-ticket product (selection and order counterbalanced), and a third test ad for the TV program.
  • The two product test ads always appeared in the middle position in the second and third ad breaks.

PROCEDURE

  • All participants viewed the content in individual viewing labs designed to encourage natural viewing.
  • Each lab had a regular TV set, a comfortable chair, pictures on the wall, and potted plants.
  • They first saw a standard set of video instructions: "Colored buttons on the screen can be selected with the corresponding color button on your remote control.
  • Even the control condition participants had to use their remote controls to advance through these instructions and vote electronically at the end of the show, but otherwise, interaction was not forced.
  • After the session, participants completed a paper-and-pencil questionnaire in another room, were thanked and compensated, and, if they consented, were phoned the next day to measure their dayafter recall (333 [60%] consented).

Thought Listings

  • The posttest survey asked about four of the ads participants had seen (3 test, 1 filler, except for the telescopic condition, which had 2 test, 2 fillers).
  • Before answering any other questions on the questionnaire, participants listed all the thoughts they had while viewing these ads, using a separate line for each thought, which they self-coded as positive (+), negative (-), or neutral (N) (Rossiter and Percy 1997; agreement between self-coding and judge coding is usually high, such as 98% in Petty et al. 1993).
  • Total thoughts refers to the line count, and net positive thoughts is the number of positive thoughts minus the number of negative thoughts.

Weighted Purchase Intention

  • In Table 2, the authors describe how they frame and weight the 11-point Juster (1966) purchase intention (PI) scale to predict purchasing, depending on whether the product is a highticket, planned purchase or a low-ticket, regular purchase.
  • The authors also reveal how they estimated the percentage of buyers per cell (Rossiter and Percy 1997).
  • For these data, both estimates of purchase incidence are practically identical, which suggests their weighted PI results are not affected by distributional anomalies (e.g., bimodal distributions).

Attitudes

  • The questionnaire went on to measure two attitudes, which the authors expected would mediate the effects of the number and valence of thoughts generated by the ad downstream to weighted PI.
  • The measure of attitude toward the brand (Ab) uses the mean of four 7- point semantic differential items anchored by bad-good, dislike quite a lot-like quite a lot, unpleasant-pleasant, and poor quality-good quality (Gardner 1985; α = .93 to .96).
  • Participants telephoned the next day indicated whether they could recall the ad (Brown 1985).
  • To measure the product category involvement levels for several product categories, including the four represented by the five test brands, the authors turn to the sign-up survey that participants completed when they joined the audience panel, an average of 10 days prior to participating in the experiment.
  • The authors also measure demographics according to the audience panel sign-up survey: age (date of birth), gender, education level, and occupation.

ANALYSIS

  • The authors created a repeated measures data set with one row for each test brand.
  • In their telescopic condition, the authors created a within-subjects repeated-ad condition by substituting, in the "holes" left in the second and third breaks by offering one instead of three interactive ads, the second and third repeats of a second test ad, first seen in the first ad break.
  • The number of data points for each dependent variable varies, however, because of missing data (e.g., "don't know" responses, not being available for a DAR phone call).

Controlling for Selection Bias

  • To test their research questions, the authors must identify how much of the differences between interactors and non-interactors is due to self-selection by already-persuaded participants, and how much might be due to the effects of the interaction.
  • With the data from their control group, which saw regular, noninteractive TV ads, the authors can determine whether interaction with iTV ads does no more than select out the high-interest consumers from any group.
  • If that were the case, the data from their interactors would be identical to data from an equivalent proportion of the control sample with higher product category involvement, and any differences the authors observe between interactors and non-interactors would be due entirely to this truncating effect of self-selection (Greene 2008).
  • If interaction generates effects beyond those observed in the top 40% of the control group, it strongly suggests that interaction has persuasive effects beyond self-selection.

Descriptive Statistics

  • The authors list, in Table 3, the descriptive results for their key dependent measures across the four experimental conditions.
  • Consistent with the effects of self-selection, the high-involvement controls (the top 40%) provide a closer comparison to interactors in the iTV ad conditions.
  • Finally, the authors use Table 5 to list the means, standard deviations, and correlations across all the measures they use to test their seven research questions.
  • Net positive thoughts have a positive correlation with Aad, and Aad has a positive correlation with Ab, which has a positive correlation with weighted PI.
  • Superscript letters indicate significantly different comparisons (Tukey HSD tests) (p < .05).

Research Question 1

  • With RQ1, the authors investigate whether iTV ads can generate interaction from viewers who are not highly involved with the advertised product category.
  • The data indicate the answer to this question is yes.
  • When the authors divide the three iTV ad format conditions into high and low prior involvement groups using median splits, the proportion of interactors is identical in the low- and high-involvement groups for all three formats (χ2(5) = 3.30, p = .654).
  • Participants who saw DAL iTV ads could explore them for as long as they wanted, and time-in-the-DAL correlates significantly with prior product category involvement (r(158) = .39, p < .001).

Research Question 2

  • In RQ2, the authors asked whether interaction with iTV ads can increase thinking about the ad and ad recall.
  • Interactors generate more thoughts than non-interactors (Table 4), but this effect might be due simply to self-selection, because the authors find no difference between interactors and the top 40% of the control sample (or, for that matter, the bottom 60% or the control sample as a whole; p = .626).
  • It is more challenging, however, to use self-selection to explain differences between interactors and non-interactors with low product category involvement prior to this study.

Research Question 4

  • With RQ4, the authors ask whether interactions with iTV ads can increase net positive thoughts about the ad.
  • Again, the answer is tentatively positive, because the increase associated with interaction could be due to self-selection.
  • Interaction also has a positive effect on low-involvement viewers of iTV ads, which cannot be explained well by selfselection.

Research Question 5

  • In response to RQ5, about whether interaction with iTV ads can increase the probability of purchasing the advertised brand, the authors find a positive response, though again, perhaps no more than could be explained by self-selection.
  • Again, the authors note the difference between low-involvement interactors and non-interactors, which they cannot explain easily with self-selection.

Research Question 6

  • Thus far, their results indicate no general positive effects of iTV ads that the authors cannot explain with self-selection, though it is difficult to use self-selection to explain the differences between interactors and non-interactors with low product involvement prior to the study.
  • In RQ6, the authors ask whether interactors with DAL iTV ads might generate more thoughts about the ad, as well as have higher levels of ad recall, more net positive thoughts, and a higher probability of buying the advertised brand, compared to interactors who view the two other iTV ad formats.
  • The DAL interactors do not generate more total thoughts than interactors with the other two formats, though they are more likely to recall the ad than impulse interactors (Table 4) and the control sample as a whole (χ2(1, N = 219) = 8.30, p = .004).
  • This positive effect on DAR may be due to self-selection, in that it is not significantly higher than the score for the top 40% of the control group.

Research Question 7

  • Finally, RQ7 asked whether interactors with telescopic iTV ads might generate more thoughts about the ad, as well as have higher levels of ad recall, more net positive thoughts, and a higher probability of buying the advertised brand than interactors with impulse iTV ads.
  • Telescopic interactors generate more net positive thoughts than the control sample as a whole (p = .007).
  • Moreover, the telescopic format is the only one to yield results that cannot be explained by self-selection.
  • Telescopic interactors exhibit higher levels of DAR and weighted PI than the top 40% of the control group.

DISCUSSION

  • The results of this study suggest that iTV ads can have effects that go beyond direct response: iTV ads can be persuasive as well as selective.
  • Responses to these ads qualify leads from consumers who are highly interested in the product category, but iTV ads can also generate interactions, prior to response, from consumers less interested in the category, and increase their interest in buying the advertised brand.
  • Many of their results may reflect self-selection effects, with one significant exception.
  • Rather, DAL interactivity generates more negative thoughts than the other two formats, perhaps because the interactivity that their DAL ads offer promises more than it could deliver.
  • Pressing navigation buttons on the remote was "too much work," in that these viewers preferred to watch rather than "read TV.".

Implications for Advertisers

  • The authors results suggest that iTV ads can generate leads and build purchase intentions, just as online banner ads can have branding effects beyond click-through rates (Hollis 2005).
  • The authors confirm prior findings that one interaction with a DAL iTV ad equals three repeat exposures to a regular ad, in terms of generating awareness (Bellman, Pribudi, and Varan 2004) and extend this new rule of thumb for media buyers to telescopic ads.
  • But if the production of the long-form video is planned beforehand, it may not add much to the budget for a standard 30-second commercial (e.g., it could consist of "out-takes" which would otherwise end up on the cutting room floor).
  • Case studies show that DAL ads have been very successful (Sky Media 2009); additional research to compare progressive levels of DAL information content may find that advertisers can use the highly customizable DAL format to deliver precisely targeted and highly persuasive messages.
  • Microsites on IPTV, which users interact with through a mouse, may be especially effective (Loughney, Eichholz, and Hagger 2008).

Limitations and Suggestions for Further Research

  • This exploratory study contains several limitations that further research could address.
  • Second, the authors generated interactivity among people with low product category involvement, but this finding might be due to characteristics of their study, such as demand effects or random chance; it thus needs further replication.
  • High-involvement niche programs like home improvement shows might increase the inclination to interact with relevant product ads.
  • The results of this exploratory study produce some limited preliminary findings that could help inform research, especially the suggestion that interacting with iTV ads can enhance awareness and purchase intentions as well as deliver an addressed response.
  • More research is needed, as the authors are unable to draw firm conclusions from this study.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

  • Steven Bellman (Ph.D., University of New South Wales) is an Associate Professor and Deputy Director of the Interactive Television Research Institute at Murdoch University in Perth, Western Australia.
  • Anika Schweda (Ph.D., Murdoch University) is a former ITRI Post Doctoral Research Fellow at the Interactive Television Research Institute and currently divides her time between writing papers like this one and looking after baby twins.
  • Schweda@itri.tv Duane Varan (Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin) is the Director of the Interactive Television Research Institute and holds the inaugural Chair in New Media at Murdoch University, also known as Email.
  • He also oversees Beyond :30, a collaborative industry research project focused on understanding the interactive viewer and exploring emerging models for TV advertising, and is the Executive Director and Chief Research Officer for The Disney Media & Advertising Lab in Austin, Texas.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT

  • This research was supported by the members of the Beyond :30 consortium and the Australasian CRC for Interaction Design, established and supported under the Cooperative Research Centres Program through the Australian Government's Department of Education, Science and Training.
  • The authors thank the editors and three anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments.

Did you find this useful? Give us your feedback

...read more

Content maybe subject to copyright    Report

A COMPARISON OF THREE INTERACTIVE TELEVISION AD FORMATS
Steven Bellman, Anika Schweda, & Duane Varan
ABSTRACT: This study explores the effects of interacting with three current interactive television (iTV) ad formats, using an
Australian audience panel. Interaction with iTV ads has positive effects on awareness and net positive thoughts, which increase
purchase intentions compared with the influence of regular ads. The telescopic format represents the best format, likely because it
makes the most of the entertaining possibilities of iTV by offering additional long-form video; its superior performance cannot be
explained readily by self-selection effects. The results suggest that the effectiveness of iTV ads should be measured by their
interaction rate rather than the much smaller response rate, and iTV advertisers should consider ways to maximize interaction
and response rates.
Keywords: Interactive digital television, advertising, experiment, interactivity, self-selection, telescopic ads.
The digitization of television introduces new capabilities to
television viewing experiences, including interactive formats
for advertising (Cauberghe and De Pelsmacker 2006). In the
United States, Canoe Ventures, a joint initiative by the six
largest cable companies, including Cablevision Systems,
Comcast, and Time Warner Cable, promises to roll out
interactive television (iTV) ads to 38 million homes that
already have two-way communication digital cable boxes
installed. Viewers watching these ads can use their remote
controls to request information about a product, such as a
brochure or more information onscreen, or even buy the
product (Arango 2008; Petrecca 2008). Interactive TV
advertising services are also likely to feature on emerging
platforms such as IPTV (Loughney, Eichholz, and Hagger
2008; Schechner and Kumar 2009) and mobile phones (Nasco
and Bruner 2007); they are already present on some video-on-
demand (VOD) and digital video recorder (DVR) services
(Manly 2006). This study provides an exploratory
investigation of a key question for broadcasters and marketers:
How effective are these new iTV ads?
To answer this question, we test not just one but three major
iTV ad formats currently in use around the world (Cauberghe
and De Pelsmacker 2006). By testing three formats, we can
investigate whether iTV ads are effective in general or only
with the most appropriate format.
The impulse response (see Appendix 1) format is widely used
on the British Sky Broadcasting platform in the United
Kingdom, and a similar format was deployed between 1999
and 2004 on the "Wink" platform in the United States (now
owned by OpenTV; http://www.opentv.com
). Similar to other
formats, these ads have an "interactivity" icon superimposed
over the standard video ad. This icon is typically accompanied
by a text message that invites viewers to press a button on their
remote control (i.e., the red button on Sky, the SELECT/OK
button on Wink/Open TV) to take advantage of an offer, such
as a brochure or "call back," or enter a sweepstake. The
interactivity in impulse response ads is very limited, often
involving only a second button press (e.g., the blue button on
the Sky platform) to confirm "taking" the offer, which prevents
accidental requests and ordering by young children. Because
the interactivity is so simple, the accompanying messages fit
easily on banners superimposed over the regular ad, which
plays out normally underneath them. If the offer requires
details such as a name or telephone number, which can take
several minutes to enter, the banners will superimpose over
the next content (which on Sky is always a program, because
the iTV ads are always last in a break), until the interaction is
complete.
Dedicated advertiser location (DAL) ads (see Appendix 2)
allow much greater interactivity, because they resemble
miniature Web sites ("microsites"). However, to view them,
the interactor must leave his or her live video content. These
pages are sub-channels, obtained by dividing the main
channel's allocated bandwidth, which limits the number of
pages that can be used and the type of content displayed (e.g.,
audio/video versus text/stills). These pages tend to resemble a
PowerPoint presentation, but interactors can navigate freely
(change channels) between pages by pressing buttons on the
remote control. Again, this format is widely used on Sky in the
United Kingdom.
Telescopic ads (see Appendix 3) also take viewers away from
the program but to extended audiovisual ("long-form")
content, downloaded on demand or stored in advance on the
viewer's DVR. Thus, viewers can pause the program to view a
JournalofInteractiveAdvertising,Vol10No1(Fall2009),pp.1434.
©2010AmericanAcademyofAdvertising,Allrightsreserved
ISSN15252019

15 JournalofInteractiveAdvertising Fall 2009
telescopic ad and not miss anything. This format is similar to
TiVo's "showcase" (Harmon 2003) and was introduced in the
United Kingdom by Sky as the VAL (video advertiser location)
in late 2007 (McLachlan 2009). Examples of all three formats
can be viewed on the Sky Media (2009) Web site.
We compare the effectiveness of these three iTV ad formats in
two ways. First, we assess their interaction rates. The main
benefit of iTV ads for advertisers is their ability to generate
timely responses from self-qualifying prospects (Marcus
2008). Responding to TV ads is more attractive to viewers
when they can do so without missing any content, so response
rates tend to be higher for iTV ads than for traditional free
phone call ads, which are also more expensive to implement
(Harvey 2004; Schreiber 2008). Similar to previous studies
(e.g., Levy and Nebenzahl 2006, 2008), we investigate how
much the interaction rate may depend on involvement with
the product, which is a measure of how qualified the
respondent is. The performance of iTV advertising campaigns
can be gauged by their ability to select a target audience for the
campaign, namely, those viewers who are most interested in
the advertised product (Marcus 2008).
Second, we measure the effects of iTV ads on awareness and
persuasion. The ability of iTV ads to generate responses from
qualified prospects may be all that advertisers consider, but
just as Web banner ads do more than generate click-through
actions, iTV ads might do more than more than simply
"harvest" consumers already sold on the brand by other forms
of advertising (cf. Loughney, Eichholz, and Hagger 2008).
Intuitively, interactors should be more interested in the
product but after interacting also be more aware of the
advertised brand, with more favorable attitudes and intentions
toward it, than non-interactors. These differences provide
useful checks of how well an iTV ad selects useful respondents.
However, we go beyond simple checks to explore whether any
of these potential positive effects may be due to interaction
with the ad. If interaction with iTV ads has positive effects on
awareness and persuasion, iTV ads could be designed and
tested to maximize these effects and thus occupy an even more
important role in the advertising mix.
We measure awareness using ad recall and persuasion by
brand purchase intentions. These important measures of
effectiveness for regular TV ads are also critical for no-
response iTV ads, such as those that provide information or
games. One-third or more of interactions with iTV ads that
make offers are no-response interactions; that is, the offer does
not get accepted (Harvey 2004). Is it possible that these "failed"
interactions have a positive benefit for the advertiser? Case
studies by Sky suggest that interaction with iTV ads may
influence awareness and persuasion, even when the offer is not
accepted. For example, half of the interactors not interested in
Dulux paint prior to an interaction said afterward that they
were likely to purchase the brand (Sky Media 2009). Scanner
data from Sky's viewer panel, SkyView, also shows an increase
in purchasing after interaction, across product categories
(McLachlan 2009). Controlled lab studies also reveal that iTV
ads increase awareness, brand attitude (Bellman, Pribudi, and
Varan 2004; Cauberghe and De Pelsmacker 2008c), and
behavioral intentions (Reading et al. 2006).
We test for the persuasive effect of iTV ads using a measure
recommended for ad testing by Rossiter and Percy (1997) that
conveniently combines awareness and intention in one
number: weighted purchase intention, or awareness ×
intention. Greater awareness increases sales only if purchase
intentions are favorable, and higher purchase intentions
increase sales only if consumers can remember the brand
(Ehrenberg, Barnard, and Scriven 1997). Note that we measure
intention to purchase rather than actual purchasing (Jensen
2005; Johnson 2006; Petrecca 2008), as others have done with
iTV ads (Levy and Nebenzahl 2008). We choose this measure
not only to compare iTV ads with regular ads but also because
iTV purchase ads are still very rare in the field; only 1% of
Wink ads, and no Sky ads at all, have been purchase ads.
In the next section, we develop research questions about why
viewers might interact with iTV ads and why interaction with
iTV ads generally, or some iTV ad formats rather than others,
might be associated with a positive effect on purchase
intentions. We also offer a brief discussion of the method we
use to differentiate self-selection response effects from the
potentially positive effects of interaction. We then describe our
experiment and report its results. Finally, we conclude with a
discussion of the implications of our study for advertisers and
further research.
LITERATURE REVIEW
Cauberghe and De Pelsmacker (2006, p. 23) define interactive
digital television as "a group of technologies that gives users
the possibility to take control over their TV experience,
enabling interactivity with the content." The key term in this
definition is "interactivity." In this section, we develop seven
research questions about what drives viewers to interact with
iTV ads and what effects might result from interactivity.

16 JournalofInteractiveAdvertising Fall 2009
Product Category Involvement
For advertisers, one of the most useful aspects of iTV ads is
their ability to "cherry pick" the viewers most interested in
buying the advertised product. Product category involvement
increases the personal relevance of ads for that category
(Rothschild 1979), especially when a person is "in the market"
(Richins and Bloch 1986), which makes it more likely that ads
will be processed more extensively (Celsi and Olson 1988;
Greenwald and Leavitt 1984; Petty, Cacioppo and Schumann
1983) and that viewers will want to click on an interactive ad
to find out more about the advertised brand (Mathwick and
Rigdon 2004; Yang et al. 2006).
But what if iTV ads could collect responses from viewers who
were not as involved with the product category? This
capability would spread the potential benefits of interacting to
those viewers who could be most affected by it, that is, those
not already sold on the advertised brand by information they
already have. Levy and Nebenzahl (2006, 2008) repeatedly find
that higher product category involvement is positively
associated with interacting with iTV ads, though they measure
product involvement after the interaction, which implies it
could have been an effect rather than a cause of interactivity.
The effects of ad execution variables, such as the use of
comparative advertising (Pechmann and Esteban 1993), are
especially strong at moderate levels of involvement, at which
they can function as both peripheral and central cues. The
presence of interactive enhancements, which can serve as
peripheral or central cues (Liu and Shrum 2009), also might
have a similarly compelling effect at moderate or even lower
levels of prior product category involvement. Recently, Liu
and Shrum (2009) manipulated message involvement using a
sample that varied in product involvement and found that
even low message involvement participants interacted to some
extent, though significantly less than high message
involvement participants. These findings suggest that though
there is undoubtedly a positive correlation between product
category involvement and the extent of interactivity, minimal
interactivity, such as pressing a button on a TV remote
control, might occur at a low threshold of involvement. Our
first research question sets out to explore this possibility:
RQ1: Can iTV ads generate interactions from viewers
who are not highly involved with the advertised product
category?
Effects of Interactivity on Awareness and Persuasion
Research into interactivity and its effects has been plagued by
vagueness and inconsistency in the definition of what, exactly,
"interactivity" is (Bucy and Tao 2007; Rafaeli and Ariel 2007).
Nevertheless, various studies demonstrate that the availability
of interactive features, such as hyperlinks, search engines, and
messaging capabilities, give rise to perceptions of interactivity,
which fully mediate the influence of objectively measured
interactivity on measures of communication effects, such as
evaluations of a Web site (Song and Zinkhan 2008; Wu 2005).
Ratings of perceived interactivity appear to measure the
distance between the current interaction and the "gold
standard" for interactivity: face-to-face conversation (Rafaeli
and Ariel 2007; cf. Bucy and Tao 2007). Various dimensions of
perceived interactivity include active control, two-way
communication, and synchronicity (Liu 2003; Liu and Shrum
2002; see also Johnson, Bruner, and Kumar 2006; Sohn and
Lee 2005), though all these subdimensions are characteristic of
face-to-face conversation (Rafaeli and Ariel 2007). Like a good
teacher, interactive stimuli identify the points that need to be
learned and can repeat them until the receiver knows them by
heart (Schaffer and Hannafin 1986). Like a persuasive
salesperson, interactive stimuli can identify and answer
objections, increase the expected value of desired outcomes,
bolster the customer's belief the outcomes are possible, and
adapt goals to the stage of the behavior-change process
(Cassell, Jackson, and Cheuvront 1998). Moreover, the
consistency, persistence, and access to data associated with
computerized applications give them the potential to be better
teachers and more persuasive salespeople than human
interactors (Fogg 2003).
At a minimum, the addition of interactive opportunities to a
video advertisement should clarify its key points for passive,
low-involvement viewers (Schaffer and Hannafin 1986), who
have limited capacity to comprehend audiovisual experiences
(Lang 2000). This identification of key points and goals
(Janiszewski 1998) and the need to be prepared to act on them
should motivate the application of extra resources to make
more capacity available for encoding, storage, and retrieval of
key points (Cauberghe and De Pelsmacker 2008b; Lang 2000;
Lustria 2007). Similar to motivated message processors
generally (MacInnis, Moorman, and Jaworski 1991),
interactors should process the ad more deeply (Liu and Shrum
2002; Sundar and Kim 2005) and generate more thoughts
about the ad (Celsi and Olson 1988; Sicilia, Ruiz, and Munuera
2005). The longer experiences offered by iTV ads also offer
more time for elaborating on the ad's message (Cauberghe and

17 JournalofInteractiveAdvertising Fall 2009
De Pelsmacker 2008c), similar to the thinking space created by
the repetition of regular ads (Cacioppo and Petty 1979;
Campbell and Keller 2003). Greater elaboration and more
thoughts about the key points in the ad will offer more
opportunities to rehearse them, so that they are more likely to
be recalled (Cacioppo and Petty 1979; Greenwald and Leavitt
1984). Therefore, we investigate whether interactors with iTV
ads generate more thoughts about the ad and therefore have a
higher level of ad recall than non-interactors, as well as
compared with viewers of regular TV ads.
RQ2: Can interaction with iTV ads increase thinking
about the ad and ad recall?
A rule of thumb used by media planners suggests three
exposures to a regular ad are necessary to communicate its
message and maximize its effectiveness (Krugman 1972;
Naples 1997), especially when advertising unfamiliar (Jones
1997) or low-involvement (Katz 2007) brands. With audience
fragmentation and TV ad avoidance increasing, achieving this
goal is more and more difficult. Previous research shows that a
single interaction with a DAL iTV ad can deliver the same
levels of awareness as three exposures to a regular ad (Bellman,
Pribudi, and Varan 2004). In our third research question, we
consider whether this new rule of thumb applies across iTV
ads generally:
RQ3: Do interactors with iTV ads exhibit a level of ad
recall equal to or greater than the level of ad recall
associated with three exposures to a regular TV ad?
Generating more thoughts about the ad is unlikely to
encourage buying if all these thoughts are negative. The overall
evaluation of the advertised brand depends on how many
positive thoughts get generated, relative to negative thoughts
(Cacioppo and Petty 1979; Sicilia, Ruiz, and Munuera 2005).
Usually, an excess of positive thoughts is summarized by a
positive attitude toward the ad; in the absence of any prior
information about the brand, a positive attitude toward the ad
generally is predictive of a favorable brand attitude and
purchase intentions (Brown and Stayman 1992; MacKenzie
and Lutz 1989). Therefore, we propose the following research
question:
RQ4: Does interaction with an iTV ad increase net
positive thoughts about the ad?
We further consider whether interaction with iTV ads has a
positive effect on sales (estimated using weighted purchase
intention), which seems likely if the answers to our previous
research questions are positive. That is, interactors with iTV
ads should be more aware of the advertised brand than non-
interactors and generate more net positive thoughts about the
brand. Then,
RQ5: Can interaction with an iTV ad increase the
probability of purchasing the advertised brand?
Evidence in support of this hypothesis comes from previous
studies by Cauberghe and De Pelsmacker (2008c), who find a
positive effect of interactivity on attitude toward the brand,
and Sundar and Kim (2005), who reveal that purchase
intentions increase in line with higher levels of interactivity.
Potential Differences Between iTV Ad Formats
As well as testing for a generally positive effect of interaction
with iTV ads on awareness and persuasion, we are interested
in testing the relative effectiveness of the three main iTV ad
formats. Previous research identifies an "interactivity paradox"
(Bucy 2004), such that adding interactivity can generate
negative and positive thoughts, resulting in an inverse U-
shaped effect (Cauberghe and De Pelsmacker 2008b; Liu and
Shrum 2009; Sundar, Kalyanaraman, and Brown 2003). At low
to moderate levels, interactivity allows consumers to control
the information flow; thus, "customer needs are uncovered,
met, modified, and satisfied" (Bezjian-Avery, Calder, and
Iacobucci 1998, p. 23). But at higher levels of available
interactivity, the advantages of access to the right pieces of
information may come at the cost of more time and effort
(Rogers 1986), as well as the need to split resources across two
tasks: comprehension and navigation (Yeung, Jin, and Sweller
1997). Therefore, when Ariely (2000) increases the demands
on available processing capacity, he finds negative effects of
greater control over the information flow.
Our comparisons among the three formats focus on the DAL
(microsite) format, which is closest to Web site interactivity
and the most expensive to buy (Sky Media 2009). We explore
whether the DAL format, with its greater ability to provide a
customized flow of information, enables interactors to process
the content of an iTV ad more deeply and generate more
thoughts about the ad. Because DAL navigators can select the
pages of content they need to see, more thoughts may be
positive rather than negative. Therefore, DAL ads may be
more persuasive than the other two formats, as measured by
weighted purchase intention.
However, interacting with the DAL format may generate more
negative thoughts than interacting with the other two formats,
for several reasons. First, the DAL experience is not "as
engaging and genuinely interactive as web advertising"

18 JournalofInteractiveAdvertising Fall 2009
(McLachlan 2009, p. 28). If DAL ads cannot match interactors'
expectations, they may rate these interactive ads less favorably
(Sohn, Ci, and Lee 2007). Second, the return delivered by DAL
pages may not balance the effort required to retrieve it,
especially for "lazy interactors"-a description that likely fits
iTV viewers, who use a remote control to navigate rather than
a mouse or a keyboard (Jensen 2005). An excess of negative
over positive thoughts will generate a negative attitude to the
ad and therefore a less favorable brand attitude and purchase
intentions, especially if the brand is unfamiliar (Brown and
Stayman 1992), as all the brands we test are. With the
following research question, we investigate how DAL ads
compare with the other two iTV ad formats:
RQ6: Do interactors with DAL iTV ads (a) generate more
thoughts about the ad, (b) have higher levels of ad recall,
(c) have more net positive thoughts, and (d) exhibit a
higher probability of buying the advertised brand,
compared with interactors with the two other iTV ad
formats, impulse and telescopic?
Prior research suggests that telescopic ads can be more
effective than regular ads (Reading et al. 2006), but we have no
prior studies on which to base expectations about how they
will compare with impulse response ads. Both formats offer
relatively limited interactivity, which still should increase the
motivation to process the key points of the ad and therefore ad
memorability (Cauberghe and De Pelsmacker 2008b; Schaffer
and Hannafin 1986). However, the long-format video
experience delivered by telescopic ads may provide more time
to process the ad (Singh and Cole 1993), allow more space to
elaborate on the ad's message (Cacioppo and Petty 1979), and
potentially provide "vicarious product experiences," similar to
those that give long-form infomercials an edge over 30-second
ads (Singh, Balasubramanian, and Chakraborty 2000). We ask,
therefore, whether telescopic ads are more effective than
impulse ads:
RQ7: Do interactors with telescopic iTV ads (a) generate
more thoughts about the ad, (b) have higher levels of ad
recall, (c) have more net positive thoughts, and (d) exhibit
a higher probability of buying the advertised brand,
compared with interactors with impulse iTV ads?
METHOD
We use a controlled experiment to test the effects of
interaction with three currently employed iTV ad formats,
using an audience panel recruited through newspaper
advertisements and direct mail from the general public in an
Australian city. This study was carried out during March-May
2005 as the first of a series of proprietary studies investigating
future trends in television advertising and programming,
sponsored by a global consortium of companies, including
television networks, media buyers, and advertisers
(http://www.beyond30.org/
). This balance of interests helps
ensure the independence of the research.
SAMPLE
This study was conducted in Australia to take advantage of a
well-equipped audience research laboratory with eight years of
experience in developing and testing interactive TV
applications. The obvious disadvantage of using an Australian
panel is that it contains no U.S. consumers. But Australia is
culturally similar to the United States (e.g., on Hofstede's
[1980] individualism-collectivism index, Australia scores 90
[#2], and the United States scores 91 [#1]), and the main
language in both countries is English. American programs fill
Australian network schedules, so the cover story for the
participants in our study was that they were evaluating
whether a new U.S. show should be aired on Australian TV.
They were told that because the show had been recorded in the
United States, it included U.S. ads in the ad breaks. This story
enabled us to advertise unfamiliar brands from product
categories that were readily available in the local market, using
finished/actually aired ads, a manipulation that can be difficult
to achieve in the United States (Brasel and Gips 2008). Any
effects we observe cannot be explained by prior exposure
(Campbell and Keller 2003).
Participants were invited to undertake a one-hour study in
return for a AUD$20 department store voucher. The final
sample (N = 559) contained more women than men (66%
versus 34%) but ranged widely in age (18 to 84 years, M =
37.90, SD = 15.61). Only 20% were students, and only 30% had
some college education or higher.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN
The 559 participants were randomly allocated across four
conditions: (1) impulse response (n = 140), (2) DAL (n = 129),
(3) telescopic (n = 219), and (4) control (regular versions of
the test ads, n = 71). More participants were required for the
interactive conditions to allow for non-interaction, especially
in the telescopic condition, which offered just one interactive
opportunity to view a long-form video lasting several minutes,
in addition to the half-hour TV program.
Examples of the three interactive conditions, for three of the
five test brands, appear in the Appendices. For all three iTV ad

Citations
More filters

Book
01 Jan 2009

8,216 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
Abstract: Mobile phone applications ("apps") have generated substantial interest among marketers, primarily because of their high level of user engagement and the positive impact this presumably has on a user's attitude toward the sponsoring brand. This study utilized a pre-test/post-test experimental design to determine whether using popular mobile phone apps affects brand attitude and brand purchase intention. The results show that using these apps has a positive persuasive impact, increasing interest in the brand and also the brand's product category. The relevance of the product category makes no difference, but apps with an informational/user-centered style were more effective at shifting purchase intention, most likely because this style focuses attention on the user, and therefore encourages making personal connections with the brand. Experiential game-like apps were less successful, because they focus attention on the phone. These results suggest that understanding how to maximize the impact of mobile phone apps will be a key topic for future research.

331 citations


Posted Content
Abstract: Many advertisers have argued that 15-second television commercials should be used only to reinforce effects created by longer commercials. However, this recommendation is based on studies that have several weaknesses, including use of single exposure levels, established commercials, and learning as the primary dependent variable. Reported are the findings of a laboratory experiment which compares the effectiveness of 15-second television commercials and 30-second television commercials by using novel commercials with different message appeals (informational vs. emotional), exposing subjects multiple times, and employing multiple dependent variables. Results indicate that informational 15-second commercials are as effective as informational 30-second commercials in several situations and can be used as standalone units. It is also shown that emotional 30-second commercials are superior to emotional 15-second commercials in influencing a viewer's learning of brand name and attitude. The reasons for and the implications of these findings are considered.

162 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: It is revealed that individuals' intrinsic immersion tendencies have a positive moderating effect on the sensation of physical and self-presence, above and beyond the influence of screen size.
Abstract: This study investigated the effects of viewing angle manipulated through screen size and the moderating role of players' immersion tendencies on presence experience in the context of computer game playing. Thirty participants played a third-person computer game, Tomb Raider 2, in two screen size conditions: a 12.7-in. and an 81-in. display. ANCOVA analyses showed that playing in front of a large screen led to a more favorable impression on the game character, a more positive mood change, and significantly higher feelings of both physical and self-presence, confirming previous research. Our findings also revealed that individuals' intrinsic immersion tendencies have a positive moderating effect on the sensation of physical and self-presence, above and beyond the influence of screen size. The results suggest that feeling of presence as well as overall game experience is determined by the interaction between technological factors and human influence.

153 citations


Cites background from "A Comparison of Three Interactive T..."

  • ...Bellman, Schweda, and Varan (2009) compared advertising effectiveness across three screen types: TV (35 in.), personal computer (10 in.), and iPod (2 in.)....

    [...]


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The results show that entertainment, informativeness and customization are the strongest positive drivers, while irritation is negatively related to YouTube advertising, which affects both brand awareness and purchase intention of consumers accordingly.
Abstract: Nowadays, we have been faced with an increasing number of people who are spending tremendous amounts of time all around the world on YouTube. To date, the factors that persuade customers to accept YouTube advertising as an advertising medium are not yet fully understood. The present paper identified four dimensions towards YouTube advertising (i.e., entertainment, Informativeness, Customization and irritation) which may be affected on advertising value as well as brand awareness, and accordingly on purchase intention of consumers. The conceptual model hypothesizes that ad value strategies are positively associated with brand awareness, which in turn influence perceived usefulness of You Tube and continued purchase behavior. For this study, data were collected from students studying at the Sapienza University of Rome. In total, 315 usable questionnaires were chosen in order to analysis of data for the variables. The results show that entertainment, informativeness and customization are the strongest positive drivers, while irritation is negatively related to YouTube advertising. On the other hand, advertising value through YouTube affects both brand awareness and purchase intention of consumers accordingly. A novel model for the advertisement effectiveness analysis through social media.Brands are advised to note the massive potential for YouTube advertising can provide.Consumers' perception on YouTube advertising has been linked to purchase intention.Customization through YouTube advertising plays a main role on advertisement value.

134 citations


References
More filters

Book
01 Dec 1969
Abstract: Contents: Prefaces. The Concepts of Power Analysis. The t-Test for Means. The Significance of a Product Moment rs (subscript s). Differences Between Correlation Coefficients. The Test That a Proportion is .50 and the Sign Test. Differences Between Proportions. Chi-Square Tests for Goodness of Fit and Contingency Tables. The Analysis of Variance and Covariance. Multiple Regression and Correlation Analysis. Set Correlation and Multivariate Methods. Some Issues in Power Analysis. Computational Procedures.

103,911 citations


"A Comparison of Three Interactive T..." refers background in this paper

  • ...(Tables 3 and 4 list other effect sizes, measured by partial η2; small = .01, medium = .06, large = .14: Cohen 1988)....

    [...]



Book
01 Nov 1980
Abstract: In his bestselling book Culture's Consequences, Geert Hofstede proposed four dimensions on which the differences among national cultures can be understood: Individualism, Power Distance, Uncertainty Avoidance and Masculinity. This volume comprises the first in-depth discussion of the masculinity dimension and how it can help us to understand differences among cultures. The book begins with a general explanation of the masculinity dimension, and discusses how it illuminates broad features of different cultures. The following parts apply the dimension more specifically to gender (and gender identity), sexuality (and sexual behaviour) and religion, probably the most influential variable of all. Hofstede closes the book with a synthesizing statement about cultural values as they are linked to sexuality, gender and religion.

19,826 citations


Book
01 Jan 2009

8,216 citations


"A Comparison of Three Interactive T..." refers methods in this paper

  • ...…data from our interactors would be identical to data from an equivalent proportion of the control sample with higher product category involvement, and any differences we observe between interactors and non-interactors would be due entirely to this truncating effect of self-selection (Greene 2008)....

    [...]


Journal ArticleDOI
Abstract: The hypothesis is offered that mere repeated exposure of the individual to a stimulus object enhances his attitude toward it. By \"mere\" exposure is meant a condition making the stimulus accessible to the individual's perception. Support for the hypothesis consists of 4 types of evidence, presented and reviewed: (a) the correlation between affective connotation of words and word frequency; (b) the effect of experimentally manipulated frequency of exposure upon the affective connotation of nonsense words and symbols; (c) the correlation between word frequency and the attitude to their referents j (d) the effects of experimentally manipulated frequency of exposure on attitude. The relevance for the exposure-attitude hypothesis of the exploration theory and of the semantic satiation findings were examined.

5,264 citations


Frequently Asked Questions (2)
Q1. What are the contributions in "A comparison of three interactive television ad formats" ?

This study explores the effects of interacting with three current interactive television ( iTV ) ad formats, using an Australian audience panel. The results suggest that the effectiveness of iTV ads should be measured by their interaction rate rather than the much smaller response rate, and iTV advertisers should consider ways to maximize interaction and response rates. 

This exploratory study contains several limitations that further research could address. Third, the additional measures used in further research should include process variables, such as perceived interactivity, which the authors assume increases in the presence of interactive opportunities but do not measure directly ( Tremayne 2005 ). Fourth, though the authors use rigorous controls to rule out alternative explanations for their findings, such as primacy/recency effects, unequal offers across ad models, or differences in demographics, iTV is still a new phenomenon in Australia, and they can not rule out novelty effects. The authors also can not ignore the possibility that cultural factors, such as different preferences for the products advertised or varying experience with certain technologies ( e. g., Teletext ; Schweda, Bellman, and Varan 2005 ), may influence their results.