Sector report: Telecoms

Insight from RAMetrics


People born in the late 1970s are the last generation of humans on the planet to have grown up prior to the popularisation of digital culture – what did we even do before the internet? It’s completely revolutionised our day to day lives, changed the way we do business and how we communicate with each other.

According to the latest TGI Clickstream survey 95% of the British public have Wi-Fi access at home – up from 84% in 2014. In fact, 98% of Britons use the internet at least once a day. We are a nation reliant on our mobile devices so it’s not surprising that 96% of users feel lost without their mobile phones.

Using RAMetrics analysis, we found that readers find print advertising for telecom brands to be slightly more impactful on average (ad recall: 65% vs 64% for all ads) than other forms of advertising. Telecom ads are well-branded (familiarity: 45% vs 42%, branding: 31% vs 31% for all ads) and their strength lies in converting readers who recall the ad into readers who recognise the brand. However, the advertising tends to be less engaging (appeals to me: 25% vs 28% for all ads) and as a result less likely to encourage action (recommend: 22% vs 26% for all ads).

We looked at two age groups, 18-34s and adults aged 35+. The younger group score significantly higher than the over 35s across every single brand and action measure. They are more likely to be paying attention to telecom ads (ad recall: 71% vs 65%, attention: 28% vs 23% for 35+) and as a result, find the advertising to be more appealing (31% vs 24% for 35+) and are more likely to take actions such as visiting the advertisers’ website or their store (visiting website: 16% vs 11%, visiting advertiser: 15% vs 10% for 35+).

So how do telecom print ads stack up against the averages for print ads across all categories, specifically for the 18-34 age group? They are less impactful (ad recall: 71% vs 73% for all categories) and score similarly across other brand and action measures (easy to understand: 61% vs 78%, positive: 56% vs 52% for all categories).

Next, we looked at gender segmentation. Interestingly male readers are more likely to recall ads for telecoms (60% vs 68% for men). They also respond more positively across almost all attention, recognition and engagement metrics in comparison to women (benefit: 10% vs 13%, fresh approach: 27% vs 30% for men). Print advertising for telecoms gets a stronger emotional response from men (11% vs 15% for men) and encourages them to look for more information about the brand or advertiser (10% vs 14% for men).

We then looked at how the category performs against the averages, specifically for male readers. They react well to telecom print ads in comparison to all print ads (ad recall: 68% vs 65% for all ads) and find them easier to understand (46% vs 44% for all ads).

Next, we tackled the age old question, does size matter? Is bigger better? We know from lumen that full-page ads are viewed by more people, but what about for our chosen category? RAMetrics data shows that for telecom brands, bigger ads are noticed more (ad recall: 59% vs 56% for full-page ads vs strip ads). However, readers find strip ads to be better branded (familiarity: 39% vs 34% for full-page ads vs strip ads), so it’s not surprising that they induce more of an emotional reaction (11% vs 9% full-page ads vs strip ads). Generally full page ads tend to be more engaging, readers find the larger ad formats to be more likeable (23% vs 16% for full-page ads vs strip ads), more beneficial (12% vs 9% for full-page ads vs strip ads) and they’re better at encouraging visits to the advertiser (9% vs 7% for full-page ads vs strip ads).

Finally, full-page ads for telecom brands underperform when compared against full-page ads across all categories, they are marginally less memorable (59% vs 61% for all full-page ads) and not as engaging. Similarly, strip ads for telecom brands are well branded (familiarity: 39% vs 35% for all strip ads) but not quite as engaging (fresh approach: 16% vs 23% for all ads).

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