American Marketer


Quality of ad creative key to high ROI luxury campaigns: comScore

October 6, 2010

Dolce & Gabbana's creative elements


A comScore study highlights the importance of sound strategy and strong creative elements in driving effective execution for luxury brands’ television and digital advertising campaigns.

For luxury brands, the findings show that creative quality drives more than half of the sales for brands analyzed in the study, which is four times higher than impact of the specific media plan involved.

“Luxury brands, in particular, rely on the value of brand advertising to build long-term equity in the minds of consumers,” said Andrew Lipsman, senior director of industry analysis at comScore, Reston, VA.

“It is therefore of particular importance to ensure that the creative execution of brand advertising in the digital environment contain the elements that drive sales,” he said.

Creative creative
The comScore research shows how important it is to get the creative strategy right from the beginning. It scored campaigns’ upfront creative strategy, using the basic value proposition as a proxy.

The research categorized the results of each as below-average, average and above-average relative to the comScore ARS Fair Share Benchmark, which averages the ARS Persuasion Score resulting from copy-tests for a variety of campaigns to provide industry norms.

The actual campaign execution was then scored, using the comScore ARS standard copy-testing methodology, again categorizing each campaign using the same relative rankings.

An evaluation of the impact of the creative strategy’s score on the resulting execution helps to shed light on the value of a strong, upfront creative strategy.

The study showed that among campaigns ranking above-average, 70 percent resulted in an above-average execution.

Among campaigns with a below-average creative strategy, 65 percent resulted in a below-average creative execution.

No campaigns that scored below-average on its creative strategy performed at the above-average level on its creative execution.

“The key finding [of this report] is that creative quality drives sales, and it all begins with a sound creative strategy on the front end,” Mr. Lipsman said. “Sound execution drives effective execution.”

Creative best practices
With the evolution of digital, marketing has evolved from being about a short campaign to becoming a part of the consumer’s daily life through mobile applications and other content.

Consumers adopt the technology, allowing luxury brands to create real value, similar to a new product.

Creative is a lot more important to driving sales than the average marketer might expect.

“I think for luxury brands in terms of the digital world, it’s about how do we create engagement beyond messaging,” said Frederic Bonn, executive creative director at Razorfish, New York.

“Specifically with luxury brands, they have such a history and craftsmanship that is part of their DNA,” he said. “They have so many stories to tell that they can really use digital media to go beyond and create great media.

For all campaigns, the focus should be about creating long-term engagement between the brand and consumer.

“It’s a new initiative that is enabled by digital,” Mr. Bonn said. “That is what digital is creating and I think it is shifting what we call a campaign.”