Accelerate Your Creative Learning

  • Moving quickly on creative testing is critical to maximize ROI.
  • Modus methodically tests creative knowing the difference in performance on 1 creative compared to another can be well over 300%.
  • Changes in creative could be small items such as Music, Voice Over, Offer, Call to Action, Colors, End Cards, other variables or completely new executions.
  • IBM’s Watson Advertising Accelerator provides creative/visual insights to drive the highest engagement for a given audience
  • Anticipation: Predicts the creative elements to drive engagement
  • Segmentation: Discovers new audience segments based on message resonance to help expand a message to untapped audiences.
  • Revelation: Analyzes each campaign from a creative and audience perspective, extracting insights on the highest and lowest performing experiences.
  • Accelerator analyzes cookieless data signals to predict and subsequently assemble a customized video creative for each impression based on the likelihood of a consumer converting against a KPI.
  • The growth of OTT/CTV is accelerating faster than originally projected. It is imperative brands adopt tools that allow them to make quicker, more accurate decisions to maximize ROI.

Source: IBM Watson Advertising Accelerator Expands to Bring AI to Fast-Growing OTT Media and Streaming Landscape | Nasdaq

Hard-Hitting Jingles – Generating Response

Jingles are back, and they do work! Modus Direct currently has a radio client, Bradley Dworkin, that is using radio to support their advertising efforts. Over a year ago, we introduced a :30 Jingle into the creative rotation. When the Jingle was introduced, the calls increased 18%. That Jingle was the most consistent creative week-over-week in terms of calls and ultimate sales.  It has an upbeat hip-hop R&B feel targeting the demo and ultimately fortifying their brand.

There is a great article in InsideRadio (see below) on the success of jingles and the neuroscience behind it. We know they work, but why? Here’s a part of that article:

Neuroscience has helped validate something advertisers intuitively knew for decades but couldn’t necessarily prove: the power of jingles or audio signatures… Ace Hardware brought back its iconic “Ace is the place with the helpful hardware man” jingle in 2013.

“Jingles are using the same neural resources for the communication of ideas about brands,” says Dr. Bradley Vines, director of Nielsen Consumer Neuroscience, Europe.

The research shows that rhythm, rhymes and repetition—the essential building blocks of the jingle—are hooks that catch in long-term memory and firmly entrench the idea in a person’s mind. In other words, highly effective advertising.

Having a proven Jingle in your campaign can enhance your ability to get your message across, create more brand awareness, and increase sales. Plus, you can have some fun along the way. Bum ba-dum bum bum bum.

Good Data Practices: What to Do (or Not)

With the advent of the internet of things, wearable devices, and a pervasive need for more information the world generates over 2.5 quintillion (that’s 2.5 followed by 29 zeroes) Bytes of data every day.  Surprisingly, only 0.5% of that information is never used.  While Modus Direct doesn’t analyze quite that much data, we receive a lot! Despite our technology and elite analytics background, with every new client brings new challenges that Modus Direct tackles every day.  Are we receiving, collecting and generating this information in a straight and accurate fashion? Are we utilizing this data in the most efficient and germane method?

Data is said to be pure, unbiased, and truthful.  It is factual.   Yet, taking it at face value with no monitoring can be at best naïve and at worst disingenuous.  The methods and hardware that are used to generate and analyze data may be flawed in their application leading to errors and wrong conclusions.   To avoid this the first steps before any campaign is to plan, implement, and continually test data generating systems in order to make sure that the information is unbiased and error free.

Design what and how information is going to be gathered or created that will be relevant to the task at hand.  Be cognizant of what will be needed in the future based upon business or client needs.  It may seem like you to want to collect everything, but that can be impractical in size and require prohibitively expensive assets.  It also leads to time wasted on parsing large, unneeded datasets when a smaller, applicable collection would have served.

Once setup, testing is key.  Computers are a wonderful tool, but it takes a human touch to see patterns in information that could be signs of problems.  If the data looks too good to be true, then it probably is (and vice-versa).  Quality control is vital and an ongoing process during data collection that ensures reality is being recorded.

Now that we have good data it’s time to parse it and analyze it to inform the client of results or make internal business decisions. It’s easy to feed data into excel, make a bunch of graphs, and send off a canned report.  At Modus we really dig deep into the information to see what insights can be gleaned and utilized.  For clients that can often mean not only reporting results, but seeing what areas they can focus and grow their business and translating that into actionable decisions. Internally, Modus uses information to maximize optimizations on campaigns, giving the best bang for your buck.

It’s these data collecting, handling, and analysis processes that separates good information from the bad.  It can be the difference between success and failure.


DRTV advertising should focus on mobile and tablet strategies


With over 129 million smartphone users in the United States (55% mobile market penetration) as of January 2013, Direct Response advertisers now more than ever need to include mobile and tablet consumer engagement strategies into their response mechanisms.

With the constant evolution of multi-window experiences (TV, Phone, Tablet, PC), and the access to web browsers and search engines at the touch of a button, direct response marketers cannot rely on phone and desktop responses alone.  At the least, a responsive landing page (or website) must be developed to offer a good experience to potential buyers that were captured by the DRTV creative and offers.

Because of today’s consumer behaviors interacting with brands and DRTV advertising,  sound strategies including SEM, SEO and a mobile experience are key in today’s success.  An order, a lead or any other response goal needs to be easily attained via all response channels without any effort from the consumer (nobody likes having to “blow up” phone screens to tap on the “Order Now” button).

The days of only two response mechanisms are long gone… first impressions, good consumer experiences, consumer/brand relationships and engagements now dictate ideas, strategies and budget allocation… (note that I did not even mention Social Media – that’s a whole other post :)) so when thinking of all those, make sure to include mobile and tablet in the mix.  From experience, a few of our clients generated 50% of their overall web responses from mobile.

Are the Clouds Parting?

It’s probably safe to say every one of us has our eyes peeled for a sign, something, ANYTHING, to show us the Economy is at long last making a real comeback. Not some kind of political spin or TV Smooth Talk, but solid numbers.

If there is ever an indication the economy is turning around, it is an increase in DR Radio spending.  A recent article from Response Magazine cites a 15.1% increase in DR Radio billings for the second quarter of 2012, the best it’s been since 2008. DRTV saw similar increases in spending over the same period.  Perhaps even more impressive is a tremendous increase in Direct Response spending, up a whopping 28% per campaign from the second quarter of 2011.

Everything is trending to continue in this positive direction! Read more about it here.

New Modus Client Opening Bell Report Celebrates TV Launch!

Modus is excited to announce the TV launch of one of our newest clients, Opening Bell Report! Opening Bell Report is a dynamic, cutting edge financial newsletter providing customers with the latest data on the ups, downs, ins and outs of the financial world. Most exciting of all is that for a limited time, Opening Bell Report is offering their newsletter for a free trial! Check out their site here.

$3.1B Super PAC Spending Avalanche Does Not Overpower National Cable DRTV Advertisers

With the unleashing of the Super PACs driven by the Citizen’s United ruling, many Modus Direct clients asked about the effect it would have on the DR media marketplace in comparison to prior years. We already knew that every political year wreaks havoc on DRTV’s Spot TV clearances and rates, but with an influx of an estimated $3.1 Billion media dollars to spend, would Super PACs need to move into national cable to spend their fortunes? In the end, it turns out most spending (93% or $2.9B) continued to remain in local spot TV, and to be spent heavily (44% or $1.27B) in the last month of the election cycle. While Modus Direct’s team of DRTV buyers were poised to react to any fluctuations in clearance or rates due to the political environment, National Cable DRTV campaigns were largely not impacted by the deluge of Super PAC spending.

Read more here.

Newsflash: People Dig Honesty!

Well it looks like we in the DR world got an early Christmas Present… A new marketing trend report! (Ooo!)

There is some pretty interesting stuff in the very first trend report from Ford. Particularly interesting is that with younger demos, (think 20-30 year-olds) honesty is very important when it comes to a brand’s personality. Younger consumers want to feel like they’re being presented with an accurate representation of whatever it is they’re being sold. Stands to reason that if you’re trying to give someone a reason to believe, they’ve got to trust you first. And as we all should have learned as kids, honesty equals trust.

Perhaps it’s a result of the challenging economic times, perhaps a result of a younger generation trying to live a more sustainable and simpler life, but many younger consumers want to do more with less. At Modus, this is has always been one of our central mantras. While the Ford report cites this as a new trend, to us it’s the way we’ve been doing things.

Read more about the report here.

Take a Closer Look

Nikon recently published the winners of the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition. You gotta see this stuff to believe it. Some of the images of the tiniest things in our world are truly overwhelming. For us at Modus, it confirms our belief that paying attention to the smallest details often makes the biggest difference. It’s this philosophy that allows us to create successful campaigns again and again. You can see photos from the contest here.

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