Diana Marszalek 27 Jul 2018 // 5:27AM GMT
NEW YORK — Ketchum is taking biometric research to the next level, launching an offering that tests a slew of different physical reactions to content to get insight into what is — or isn’t — working.
Ketchum Unfiltered, launched in partnership with the German research company september Strategie & Forschung, offers clients insights and analytics based on the 20 different biological signals that show participants’ reactions to messages or content they are shown during the testing process, said Mary Elizabeth Germaine, executive VP and managing director of Ketchum Analytics.
Eye movements and pulse rates are among the physical reactions measured by Ketchum’s portable biometric readers, as are the contraction or expansion of smile lines and the reaction of sweat glands.
Once that’s done, the information is used to analyze what consumers did or didn’t like about whatever it was they were watching or listening to when the testing was taken place, Germaine said. In-depth interviews also contribute to getting a holistic view of whether particular content works.
Ketchum then uses the data to see whether the content being tested struck a chord (and if so, at what point) with participants, whose biometrics are assessed to show how that content measured against seven KPIs — attraction, trust, liability, skepticism, closeness, relevance and distress.
“By understanding those seven things you are able to dig in and see how people are reacting to that content,” Germaine said. The process allows researchers to hone their findings so that it picks up points that get missed in traditional research — whether, say, a particular word stresses someone out, or whether content is likeable but not trustworthy, Germaine said. “We really want to understand both the conscious and subconscious reactions people are having,” she said.
Testing groups typically include 20-30 people, which is large enough to start getting consistent results, Germaine said.
With the offering already in play, clients in the CPG, financial services and durable goods industries have used the research tool, she said. Although Ketchum’s partnership with september applies to only the US, the agency is going to make the capability available to clients around the world, according to Ketchum.