Immerse and Engage on London Underground

Immerse and Engage on London Underground

COG Research and Exterion Media won the MRS Award for Media Research for their work using a combination of eye tracking and skin conductance response data on the London Underground.


Immerse and Engage on London Underground

This is a summary of an award winning media research project with real commercial benefit to our client, Exterion Media.

Exterion are responsible for delivering and selling the advertising on London Underground and other transport media. The Underground is one of the world’s biggest tube systems, and advertising is a crucial revenue source, helping to keep fares down.

COG are a specialist insight agency with a range of techniques to understand our feelings about brands and our actual behaviour around purchasing and media use.

Digital and social have been taking an increasing share of media spend, and it was important for Exterion to push back by showing the special value and power of Underground ads: COG were commissioned to run a multi-stage study to demonstrate how well ads on the tube worked.

We started by working with Bournemouth University to review knowledge on how advertising works, especially in unusual places. Following this we built a methodology around measuring experience on real journeys: using eyetracking glasses and SCR recording to monitor what we see and how we react for entire (normal) journeys. The study involved over 100 journeys around the entire network, and we also did 60 follow up interviews and a large quantitative study.

The methodology was designed to match our past work measuring TV, digital and social media engagement, so we could compare ad exposure and engagement across channels.

Key takeouts were the high engagement levels tube ads achieved (as good as TV, much better than digital), the way ads were viewed across estate (leading to creative and strategic insights), and the high level of positive reaction tube ads achieve.

This allowed the client to present a credible and persuasive argument for adsales, and the value can be inferred from the new study just commissioned.

Want More?

COG Research summarise their process in the following short  video: The Engagement Zone

Read more from COG Research here


Authors: Rob Ellis, COG Research and Nicola Barrett, Exterion Media

Members: Full presentation available here.