The results are part of the second stage of the NMA’s research project, Measuring Advertising Effectiveness of Newspapers – A Fresh Approach. This part of the research, carried out by research firm Hall & Partners, exposed 1,000 consumers to 12 multimedia campaigns across motors, food, cosmetics and toiletries.
In four of the 12 campaigns tested, TV and newspapers combined delivered more than double the increase in brand commitment of TV alone (61% versus 28%) and almost double that of TV and radio combined (61% against 34%.) Maureen Duffy, chief executive of the NMA, claimed the research would allow clients to adequately evaluate the effectiveness of newspaper advertising for the first time.
“Our latest research dispels the myth that newspapers are primarily a call to action medium and cannot contribute to brand building. On the contrary, they can be hugely powerful, doubling the increase in brand commitment when included in a mixed media schedule,” she said.
Alex Randall, head of press for Vizeum, said the research proved what the industry has suspected for a long time: that press advertising is under-used.
“The challenge will be in changing people’s attitudes.
Assuming the research does prove that papers are under-used as a branding tool, the next step is to sell the message into strategic planners and clients,” he said, “The opinion change needs to happen earlier in the decision making process to affect budget allocation.”
Jo Blake, press director of Carat, also welcomed the findings and suggested the research was overdue: “Any piece of research like this is a good thing – and the NMA is the right body to be doing it. I certainly think it needed to do something like this for the national press.
“This is research that we can take to our clients, or that we can refer back to.”
The first stage, published in June 2004, identified six strategic roles newspaper ads can play: called to action, depth of information, brand values, re-appraisal, public agenda and extension.