ARN Study Reveals How Brands Can Grab More Attention Using Audio Backed By Neuroscience

ARN Study Reveals How Brands Can Grab More Attention Using Audio Backed By Neuroscience
B&T Magazine
Edited by B&T Magazine



Audio has always had the power to connect with audiences, but ARN has used cutting-edge neuroscience research to unlock the best attention-grabbing audio creative to build deeper consumer connections for brands, faster than ever.

New research from ARN’s Neuro Lab gives ARN’s commercial partners and advertisers the insight they need to use audio effectively within ad creative and campaigns to fuel long-term brand success by creating neurologically strong and emotionally meaningful connections with consumers.

The study – called A Sound Connection – led by ARN’s research & neuroscience specialist, Dr Shannon Bosshard and ARN’s director of research & Insights, Justin Stone, looked specifically at how audio affects attention, attitude, memory, engagement, and arousal in the minds of consumers and how to best use audio alongside other marketing channels.

The study revealed how small changes to audio can lead to significant increases in the connections consumers have with the content and brand messaging.

Key findings included:

  • For gender-neutral brands (ie. with no specific gender skew), a female voice can spark 15 per cent more brain activity than a male voice.
  • Using two voices conversationally can be 20 per cent more effective than one, three or four voices.
  • Well-known talent can increase attitude, memory processes and engagement by up to 10 per cent.
  • Ensuring congruency between ads and the environment increased positive attitude by 145 per cent.

The study also explored how consumer’s brains process audio creatives differently from audio-visual creatives:

  • The brain invests over 10 per cent more resources when processing audio than when processing audio-visual content
  • Audio content has 30 per cent more impact when run concurrently with audio-visual creatives.
  • Running the same messaging within audio and audio-visual creatives belonging to the same campaign increases the chance a consumer will encode the information.

When it comes to building long-lasting brand love, the study showed:

  • Repetition builds reputation – businesses should implement a consistent audio strategy in order to encourage long-term brand connection with consumers.
  • While well-known music is attention-grabbing in the short term, bespoke music is better for creating long-term connections between consumers and brands.

ARN’s research & neuroscience specialist, Dr Shannon Bosshard, said: “Creating a successful campaign is heavily reliant on a brand’s ability to capture the attention of the consumer.

“Whilst eye-tracking studies have allowed audio-visual mediums to promote their capacity to capture attention, audio mediums have begun utilising neuroscience.

“In doing so, ARN has been able to clearly demonstrate that a successful audio strategy at both a creative, and at a campaign level, is imperative when it comes to increasing attention, memory, engagement, and arousal.

“For example, we know that radio is an incredibly engaging medium and notoriously versatile. For brands advertising in this space, they are able to capitalise on this versatility, and craft creatives that express who they are.

“Our research demonstrates that both memory and attention are higher for brands that craft their own bespoke audio to accompany their brand messaging. Using neuroscience, we are able to measure these effects and have demonstrated that bespoke audio works just as well as famous music, and generates 15 per centmore activity across areas of the brain responsible for encoding and retrieving memories.“

ARN’s director of research & Insights, Justin Stone, said: “We know that for a lot of advertisers, the role that audio can play in building their brand and achieving their commercial goals is often misunderstood or even neglected.

“This is why ARN is committed to ongoing research at Neuro Lab that will continually demonstrate to advertisers the tangible ways audio can make their brands stand out.”

ARN, chief strategy & connections officer, Lauren Joyce said: “We invested in the Neuro Lab to help advertisers understand how to get more from their audio campaigns and the results of this research do just that. I’m excited about the practical applications of our findings and our ability to give commercial partners advice that will result in even better campaign outcomes.”

ARN first launched ARN Neuro Lab – the first in-house media research initiative of its kind in Australia – in late 2020.

Neuro Lab provides commercial clients, and the audio industry, with the most comprehensive and up-to-date understanding of audio.

Neuro Lab’s first study – Sound You Can See – was the first of its kind to demonstrate how the brain processes radio, podcasting and music streaming as fundamentally different products, which offers advertisers unique opportunities to promote their brands across each medium.




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