May 29, 2009

Advertising Science Fair Winners

A few weeks ago we announced "The First Ever Online Advertising Science Fair."

We said:
The Editorial Board of The Ad Contrarian is looking for a few good facts. Not opinions, not bullshit, facts about contemporary advertising and marketing that are either interesting, not widely known, or misunderstood.
We invited our readers to submit entries and we have selected four winners:

First is Matt Sadler:

"Here's my entry for the advertising science fair:
Choice is good, but too much choice is a bad thing. In a US experiment, customers at a gourmet food store were invited to try and buy a selection of either 6 or 24 jams. Whilst the table with more variety attracted more customers, the table with only six options sold a whopping ten times more jam. As the saying goes, sometimes less is more.
Here's a link to the the paper showing the research."

Our second winner is Richard Butterworth:
"A 1981 experiment reported in the British Medical Journal found that a branded pain-killer was more effective than identical pills from unbranded packs. The same branding effect was found with inert 'placebo' pills.

Psychoneuroimmunological magic!"
(Here's the link. )

Winner number three is Tim Coote, who cites an article from the NY Times:
'When advertisers...try to take advantage of new “social advertising,” extending their commercial message to a member’s friends, their ads will be noticed, all right, but not necessarily favorably. Members are understandably reluctant to become shills. IDC, the technology research firm, published a study last month that reported that just 3 percent of Internet users in the United States would willingly let publishers use their friends for advertising. The report described social advertising as “stillborn.” '
Here's the link

Our final winner is Kelly Erickson.
"If you're a man, beauty is located... right in your car, say women in a recent university study....The university team showed women pictures of the same man sitting in two cars - a £70,000 silver Bentley Continental and a battered Ford Fiesta...The women, who were aged between 21 to 40, picked the man sitting in the Bentley ahead of the same man in the Ford...Even with the growing number of women in high-paid careers.... these new, wealthy women still show a preferment for high-status males...."
Kelly concludes, "Facts are stubborn things. And sometimes lead to the same ol' conclusions, in spite of our proto-feminist selves."

Here's the link.

Thanks to all who participated.

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