Study finds web advertising is next to godliness

According to Advertising Age, a study to analyze “the combined effects of online, print and TV advertising in a single product campaign found the online component significantly increased the campaign’s measurable brand awareness impact.” A six-week analysis of a Unilever mixed-media campaign for Dove Nutrium bar soap concluded that spending 15% of the campaign’s TV/print/online budget on the Web resulted in a 24% lift in branding impact.

Jim Nail, a senior analyst with Forrester Research, wrote a briefing for the survey, in which he noted, “in the past, much of what has been presented as online advertising ‘studies’ has been little more than propaganda. This one is important because it is the first time this kind of study has been done in a disciplined, credible manner.”

The advertising study (not to be confused with just any old advertising “study”) was conducted by Marketing Evolution in conjunction with the discipline, credible folks at Microsoft’s MSN, the Interactive Advertising Bureau, the Advertising Research Foundation, Dynamic Logic, New York, and WPP Group’s Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, New York.

I looked at the report and was suprised to see that Forrester did not further extrapolate from the findings that by spending 30% of their budget on the Web, Unilever would have lifted the Dove branding impact 48%. I was also pleasantly surprised to see that Forrester is not using this research to predict that by 2004, 100% of all soap advertising will be spent on the Web, with the results being a 500% increase in cleanliness.