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VW ‘Wings’ Wins Nielsen’s Top Auto Ad Award
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VW ‘Wings’ Wins Nielsen’s Top Auto Ad Award

As TV viewers everywhere know, there are more distractions than ever while we watch TV. Now that many of us are carrying our portable technologies throughout the house, we’re truly living the connected, distracted life. Therefore, TV advertising effectiveness is more important than ever. Advertisers must grab the viewer’s attention and give them a reason to watch the ad—as well as pay attention. Today, Nielsen announced the winners of its Ninth Annual Nielsen Automotive Advertising Awards, and Volkswagen’s “Wings” spot was recognized as the Automotive Ad of the Year.

Based on the results of Nielsen’s national TV ad effectiveness surveys, the awards consider viewers’ ability to recall the ads, remember the correct brand association, remember the message or call to action and, of course, like what they see. The winning ad made its debut during Super Bowl XLVIII. It centers around VW’s claim that the brand has the most vehicles on the road with over 100,000 miles. The ad is reminiscent of a scene from the iconic film, It’s a Wonderful Life. In it, German engineers get their wings every time a VW hits 100,000 miles. The ad struck a humorous chord among viewers and landed it the top spot in the running for Nielsen’s Automotive Ad of the Year.

Other big winners included:

  • Best Sales Event Campaign: Toyota “No. 1 for Everyone”
  • Luxury Campaign of the Year: Buick “Experience the New Buick”
  • Spanish TV Advertiser of the Year: Toyota

The Nielsen Automotive Advertising Awards, presented at the 2015 New York International Auto Show, are the only awards that measure the effectiveness of automobile ads on TV.

METHODOLOGY

Nielsen TV Brand Effect employs a nationally representative online panel of TV viewers who have watched programs within the past 24 hours. These panelists answer survey questions about the programs they watched and the commercials they were exposed to. Since the panelists respond based on what they watched in a natural environment (as opposed to a clinical research environment), the results reflect real-life reaction to and memory of television commercials. Nielsen issues surveys for all national commercials within its covered dayparts and networks.

For the auto awards, Nielsen Automotive leveraged four key metrics:

  • Ad Memorability: Was the ad memorable enough to break through
  • Brand Memorability: Did the TV viewer recall whose ad it was?
  • Message Memorability: Did the TV viewer recall the primary message in the ad?
  • Likeability: Was the ad appealing (i.e., did the TV viewer like the ad)?

The finalists for the Nielsen Automotive Advertising Awards were determined based on ad performance results from 2014.

Automotive Ad of the Year

Results were specific to adults 18-54 years old. All automotive ads that launched in 2014 were evaluated at similar media weight levels so that media was not the primary driving factor of performance. The ads were evaluated based on ad recall, brand recall and message recall.

Luxury Campaign of the Year

Results were specific to viewers in the luxury demographic: adults 25-54 years old with a household income of $75,000 or above. Ads that were part of the same vehicle or branding campaign were evaluated together. They were evaluated based on combined performance on ad recall, brand recall and likeability.

Spanish-Language TV Advertiser of the Year

Results were specific to viewers in the more general non-luxury target: adults 18-54 years old. Each automotive brand was evaluated based on combined performance of their Spanish-language ads on ad recall, brand recall and likeability.

Best Sales Event Campaign

Results were specific to adults 18-54 years old. Each automotive TV sales event was evaluated based on the combined performance of ad recall, brand recall and message recall, with the results at similar media weight so that media is not the primary driving factor of performance.