System1 introduces consumer-focused ad assessment method

On June 25, 2024, System1’s Senior Vice President announced a revolutionary method of assessing Lion-winning advertisements. Instead of following industry norms, this new approach relies on viewer responses, significantly altering the way the value of ads is perceived and evaluated.

System1’s idea was presented at the prestigious Cannes Lions festival, an event which gathers a multitude of attendees, from Young Lions to brand supporters and creative professionals. The festival was brimming with enlightening ideas, discussions about the future of advertising, umpteen networking opportunities, and workshops offering comprehensive insights into the advertising landscape. However, the voice of the end consumer, perhaps the most significant part of effective marketing, was conspicuously absent.

Identifying the importance of the end consumer’s voice, System1 utilized their unique strength: assessing ads based on their ability to trigger branded emotional responses from real consumers. Without involving consumers directly in the selection process, System1 shifted the focus to measure the emotional impact of each ad.

System1’s consumer-centric approach to ad assessment

This more direct approach nurtures a genuine connection between the brand and its audience.

Exhibiting their exceptional capabilities, System1 assessed approximately 100 Lion-winning campaigns using a 15,000-person consumer sample, all in a single weekend. This enabled them to discern key attributes of effective campaigns and understand the variables that resonate with global consumers. System1’s swift handling of data and their strategic analysis of the findings speaks volumes about their capabilities in the sector.

The evaluations were conducted by regular consumers, not marketing professionals. Highlighting the potential influence of ‘light buyers’ – those unfamiliar with the category and infrequent purchasers – System1 pointed out the crucial role these consumers play in shaping the ad industry and, thus, in achieving the primary goal of marketing.

In terms of marketing decisions, System1 shared that recent creative awards showed a preference for humor. They noted the unpredictability inherent to these choices but maintained that greater experience and solid marketing analytics can lead to superior decisions.

System1 concluded with an interesting observation: Cannes award-winning campaigns stand out with a higher proportion of top-rated ads compared to their vast database or similar award-winning ads from previous years. This upward trend is a sign of the long-term effectiveness of well-crafted ads.

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