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Millward Brown and Kantar Media introduce "Tuneaway" study

23 June, 2011


Findings Show Media Placement Has More Influence than Creative in Triggering a TV Viewer to Tune Away From an Ad

NEW YORK — Millward Brown and Kantar Media unveiled the findings of a study that explores the roles ad creative and media placement play in triggering a TV viewer to tune away from an ad, a practice commonly known as “tuneaway.” The study, the result of a new Millward Brown and Kantar Media offering, shows that while poor creative content plays a critical role, improper media placement accounts for the majority of audience tuneaway.

“Tuneaway is a tremendous potential problem for advertisers that can equate to millions of wasted ad dollars,” said Mitzi Lorentzen, VP Client Solutions, Communications Development Research, Millward Brown. “By analyzing second-by-second tuning data, we are now able to identify the relative impact of the creative message on retention of audiences, as well as measure the specific media influences that impact audience tuneaway by product, category and brand. The question we will now be able to answer for our clients through our joint offering is: what creative elements and media strategies help to combat tuneaway to enhance advertising ROI?”

From a creative standpoint, Millward Brown identified three key dimensions which lead to tuneaway: ads which lack personal relevance, have a negative emotional reaction and/or simply contain information that isn’t relevant or believable.

“What we found was that there are clearly early warning signs at the creative stage which we can identify via Millward Brown’s Link™ Advertising Copy Testing Service, to help reduce tuneaway,” Lorentzen went on to say.

According to Jeff Boehme, Chief Research Officer of Kantar Media Audiences North America, “While we know creative is one part of the equation for why viewers tune away, our analysis demonstrates how media placement plays an even stronger role in determining when and why audiences tune away from commercials.”

The study, the first of its kind, identifies seven key media variables that are indicative of tuneaway, including: (1) channel, (2) program, (3) duration of ad, (4) position in pod, (5) daypart, (6) product category and (7) pod position in program.

According to Lorentzen, “The good news is that with our combined learning and measurement solutions, Millward Brown and Kantar Media can help advertisers minimize ad avoidance, both from the creative viewpoint as well as from a media placement perspective.”

Boehme added: “From a media standpoint, the overall environment can be strategically aligned and planned to minimize tuneaway.”

For more information on the Millward Brown / Kantar Media joint offering, please contact or .Additionally, you can attend a webinar on the study findings hosted by the ARF on July 21st by registering at  

About Millward Brown
Millward Brown is one of the world's leading research agencies and is expert in effective advertising, marketing communications, media and brand equity research. Through the use of an integrated suite of validated research solutions — both qualitative and quantitative — Millward Brown helps clients build strong brands and services. Millward Brown has more than 78 offices in 54 countries. Additional practices include Millward Brown's Global Media Practice (media effectiveness unit), The Neuroscience Practice (using neuroscience to enhance traditional research techniques), Millward Brown Optimor (focused on helping clients maximize the returns on their brand and marketing investments), Dynamic Logic (the world leader in digital marketing effectiveness) and Firefly Millward Brown (a global qualitative research business). Millward Brown is part of Kantar, WPP's insight, information and consultancy group.

About Kantar Media
Established in more than 50 countries, Kantar Media helps clients master the world’s multimedia momentum through analysis of print, radio, TV, internet, cinema, mobile, social media, and outdoor worldwide. Kantar Media offers a full range of media insights and audience measurement services through its global business sectors – Intelligence, Audiences, TGI and Custom. Kantar Media companies also include Compete, Cymfony and SRDS. Drawing upon the deepest expertise in the industry, Kantar Media tracks more than 3 million brands and delivers insight to more than 22,000 customers worldwide.

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