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It Always Depends on What the Desired “Results” Are!

The new Flonase “Bridgerton” :90 online video is highly creative with beautiful shots of the Ton and its promenading, sneezing characters. But a group of the characters have just succumbed to seasonal allergies. So they run to the new Apothecary in hopes the pharmacist can assist. See Spot here.

A group of lovely young Brigerton characters are overwhelmed by seasonal allergies and have come to the new Apothecary for help. The ad is for Flonase.

Alas, the fabulous pharmacist tries her best to concoct a remedy but finds it quite impossible. She informs the sneezing group that the only solution was Flonase, which was 200 years away! (This hand-drawn Flonase logo is on the last screen).

The Bridgerton pharmacist can't solve seasonal allergies yet, but hand writes a Flonase logo while telling them the perfect solution is only 200 years away!

The highly creative spot should have tremendous appeal for those familiar with Bridgerton, and who are most likely female.  The spot should also have done well with Flonase’s target audience, which is highly female, older, white, and non-Hispanic. People in these demographic groups suffer most from seasonal allergies.

“This ad was brilliant … It often didn’t even feel like I was watching an ad. It was like an entertainment short.”

“Nice visuals. Advertises two things in one and it is creatively made … although it took a bit too long to get to the point. But it was a creative ad.”

However, those not familiar with Bridgerton, or those who are in other demographic groups, might not have found the ad as appealing or useful.

“I don’t understand the pairing. A show and allergy meds? … It made me wonder what the commercial was even about until there was 5 seconds left … I know nothing about the show and very little about the meds.

Did the Great Creative Deliver Results? 

It depends on the goal and results desired!  ABX Advertising Benchmark Index evaluated the :90 online video and found it performed only slightly above both Category and Media norms. For Females Age 25+ surveyed, the ABX Index™ score of 106 was only slightly higher than the average of more than 425,000 evaluated ads tested. The GenPop audience scored the spot much lower.

If the goal were to sell Flonase, this spot was not very effective. As you can see below, an ABX Index of 106; Brand Awareness of 94; Message of 108; and Intended Action of 105 shows the creative didn’t hit the mark. Why? The audience had to wait too long while the Bridgerton universe, story line and allergy problem were set up. Only at the 88th of 90 seconds, did we learn that Flonase was the solution, but not for 200 years!

If the goal were to impact Flonase’s Reputation, on the other hand, the ad did very well with a score of 139. The beautiful presentation of the male and female characters also did well as measured by the ABX Gender Equality Index (GEI).

The ABX Index Scorecard shows the Flonase Bridgerton ad scored a slightly above average 106, with low Brand Awareness and only moderate Message and Action scores. However, Reputation scored a very high 139.

In addition, the ABX “Action” score is comprised of eight “Calls to Actions,” as shown below. If this ad was designed to drive social media discussion and link to other campaign activities, the CTA “Talk” score at 178 was very successful.

The ABX CTA sub-scores of Action show the Reputation was very high at 178, whereas all other CTAs had negative results.

Comparing the Flonase Bridgerton Video to its Prior Spots

The creative effectiveness of the Flonase Bridgerton ad must be compared against prior Flonase ads to gain useful insights.  The chart below shows the Bridgerton scores (pink line) against the average scores for pre-Bridgerton ads over the past two years (green line).  The results are stunning.

Comparing the Flonase Bridgerton ad to the Average Flonase ad effectiveness scores since May 2022 shows Bridgerton excelled in Reputation while the prior ads excelled in Purchase Intent.

The pre-Bridgerton Flonase ads scored highest in ABX Index, Brand Awareness, Messaging, and Purchase Intent. The 30-point difference between a Purchase Intent of 123 (pre-Bridgerton), and 93 (Bridgerton) shows the older ads better stimulated sales.

The Bridgerton spot, as stated earlier, does much better in Reputation (139) compared to the former ads (97), which is a 42-point difference. Three other KPIs with enormous differences include:

  • Likeability – Bridgerton 128 vs. Pre-Bridgerton 109.
  • See Again – Bridgerton 130 vs. Pre-Bridgerton 106.
  • Talk About – Bridgerton 178 vs Pre-Bridgerton 94.

Do Highly Creative Ads Always Produce Results?

Yes and no, depending on the brand’s desired results. The story line of this highly creative ad was problematic in that it couldn’t show the brand earlier, or the story wouldn’t work.  Thus, Bridgerton was the “Hero” of this story instead of Flonase.

“I loved how it was an ad of flonase but didn’t like that it was acually about the Netflix show.”

“I wanted to mention how clever they were at advertising this product because it almost made me think that it was a series. Specially after it says Netflix at the end.”

In your creative, make sure the brand is the Hero by placing it front and center. Creative accounts for 60-65% of ad effectiveness (ABX 2022 Study on 365,000 evaluated ads), so make it sing!

Written by: Angela Jeffrey, ABX Vice President Brand Management

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