Put Your Creatives to the Test

Creatives can make or break your ad. If the consumer finds one detail of the ad off-putting, it can negatively impact their likelihood to act. On the other hand, a good creative decision can make an ad even better in the long run. How can you tell if you’ve made the right choices?

Put your creatives and overall storyboard to the test

When conducting market research, it’s important to ask specifics questions surrounding the creatives. Identify which creatives need further insights. Is the voice-over actor annoying? Is the background music depressing? The test will give you the answers you need.

Testing Music

Adding music to your spot is a bold move. At times, ads will have no dialogue at all and will rely on the music and visuals alone to tell the story. This method is commonly used in fragrance and car commercials. It can work for your brand as well, but only when done right.

Run a test comparing a music-only spot with a dialogue driven, or voice-over spot to see which ad works best for your brand. If there are multiple song choices to choose from, run a test to narrow it down. Compare two, three, even four ads with different songs to identify a winner.

Actors and Characters

Flo from Progressive Insurance There are many strategies to implementing actors and characters into your ad. You can have a long term spokesperson, like Progressive’s Flo, with a strong enough identity to become a household name. Another option is to have a famous, recognizable actor do a voice over, like Jon Hamm with Mercedes-Benz.

No matter how famous or recognizable your actor or spokesperson may be, it is still very important to test for the audience reactions. You wouldn’t want the character, voice, or actor to be unintentionally off-putting.

Tagline

McDonalds logo and sloganMany ads will repeat a brand tagline or slogan. Memorable ads have catchy, engaging slogans that are quoted endlessly and alluded to in pop culture. McDonald’s “I’m lovin’ it” and Loreal’s “Because You’re Worth It” are ideal examples.

Channel their success through ad testing. Test ads with different slogans by making comparisons. An even better measure of success would be to compare your ad to a competitor’s ad featuring a tagline at the end.

Test for the following using similar questions featured below:

Overall, I ____the VOICE in this ad:

Very much liked
Somewhat liked
Neither liked or disliked
Somewhat disliked
Very much disliked

Overall, I ___the MUSIC in this ad:

Very much liked
Somewhat liked
Neither liked or disliked
Somewhat disliked
Very much disliked

Overall, I ____the CHARACTER(S) in this ad?
Very much liked
Somewhat liked
Neither liked or disliked
Somewhat disliked
Very much disliked

Overall Breakthrough

After you’ve asked questions about specific creative elements of the ad, it is good to measure the overall breakthrough. To determine whether or not your ad has made its mark, ask questions surrounding memorability. They can be open-ended, or they can ask specifics about the message.

An example would be:
What brand or product was this ad for?