From mobile to tablet and display – maximising campaign effectiveness


To help media organisations better understand today’s digital landscape, and plan accordingly, Research Now recently used its proprietary ADimension service to measure the effectiveness of cross-device advertising campaigns for two well-known consumer brands. One was a much loved UK retailing giant, the other a prominent car manufacturer in Europe and beyond.

As part of the project we investigated how the two campaigns delivered by the brands used different creative treatments according to the type of device on which the ads were served – mobile, tablet and display. We also examined the publishing context in which the ads appeared. In total, over 18 separate publishing sites and more than 18 million impressions were monitored.

By analysing the significant volume of rich data generated, our aim was to measure campaign effectiveness across a series of variations in both platform and design. What was the impact of different sites, and different devices on brand recall and purchasing intent? We hoped the results of our analysis would give media agencies new, critical insights into planning more effective campaigns and driving better ROI.


For the effectiveness stage of the research, we monitored both campaigns in four categories. First, we considered the three platforms separately. Then we looked at a combination of mobile and display. For the third stage we investigated mobile and display combined, while the fourth and final investigation was into the effect of mobile and tablet.

Then, for the critical contextual analysis stage, we investigated the impact of two different creative treatments on the same platform (e.g. two distinct designs, both on a display) before combining the data generated and assessing the findings.

Solving the device dilemma

The digital landscape is truly multi-dimensional so campaigns need to hit audiences across all devices.


Perhaps unsurprisingly, mobile advertising achieved significantly better cut-through. The results showed ad awareness on mobiles was 80% up on mobiles and displays, with ad recall up as much as 133%.

Other findings were however less expected.

For example, exposure on two devices increased campaign effectiveness significantly, across different criteria. Brand consideration jumped from 6% on just one device to 30% on two devices, while recommendation went from zero on a single device to 15% on two.

We also evidenced that different devices continue to play different roles. People in this analysis relied upon their displays for general information, used mobiles when wanting to interact, and their mobiles when performing location-based activities.

A stand-out finding for the media clients for this project was that people are highly inclined to trust a premium site – and even more likely to trust the ads served there - compared to non-premium alternatives.

Based upon this research, our recommendations for media agencies were to include mobile – and at least one other type of device – within each brand and response plan. Planners should also consider the different roles played by all three platforms, and use premium environments where possible.

Putting this advice into practice will maximise the impact of each media campaign and help agencies to continue building their working relationships.