Tag Archives | consumer neuroscience

EEG and fEMG: What Facebook’s and Expedia’s Different Takes Say about Consumer Neuroscience Today

Facebook has conducted a series of studies to show the relative value of mobile advertising over television advertising. The studies are based on EEG.

Expedia has opened a dedicated neuroscience lab to look at what influences how people decide to travel. The Lab is based on fEMG.

What does the use of these two fundamentally different neuroscience measures by these two very successful companies say about the current state of applied neuroscience? Continue Reading →

Are Small Samples in Neuro Reliable? Some Thoughts about Power

One of the first issues that market researchers face when they start to think about neuro-physiological measurement is how to think about the small sample sizes. Survey research is usually based on samples in the hundreds or even in the thousands, but it is not uncommon for User Experience testing to be based on ten (10) people. In fact, some fMRI studies have been published in peer-reviewed journals based on five (5) respondents.

This raises a very important question: Are such small samples reliable? Continue Reading →

Is Consumer Neuroscience Market-Ready or Neuro-Nonsense?

Writing in the January, 2016 edition of Quirk’s Marketing Research Review, Carl Marci of Nielsen characterized today’s consumer neuroscience as “market-ready measures with well-validated algorithms.” Writing in July 29, 2013 issue of Slate, Daniel Engber, labeled the field as neuro-nonsense and asserted that the age “mindless brain research” was over. We think the truth is better thought of thought of as being between the two views. Neuroscience has opened the door to a new way of understanding human information processing that is important for marketers. However, it has a long way to go before its value will be fully known. At the same time, the process is not helped by optimistic marketing claims about business value, which have often come up short. While they don’t lessen the promise, they diminish the standing of the practitioner field.

To help evolve the conversation and improve understanding, we have created a place on LinkedIn where researchers interested in applied neuroscience and especially in fEMG can connect, talk and share ideas. Our hope is that as more people participate, more data will become subject to more thorough analysis, and better theories of how advertising should work will emerge.

Please join us on this journey at

In Consumer Neuroscience, More is Not the Merrier

For companies starting to look seriously into Consumer Neuroscience, it is tempting to begin with a pilot study that includes as many neuroscience and bio-physiological measures as possible.  While the “more is merrier” approach might seem like the best option for investigating and assessing the relative strengths and applications of each method and measure, it should be avoided since doing so is not only unnecessary but misleading.

Instead, we recommend a more deliberative approach in order to avoid the pitfalls and reap the benefits of neuromarketing research.

Continue Reading →