How to win an award for effective advertising?

Tele2 (Dutch telecom company) wanted to optimise its TV ads to change its brand image. They used Neuro Ad Testing and obtained the necessary insights. It even led to winning the Silver Effie Award: the award for campaigns proven to be effective. Check out how Neuro Ad Testing made it possible.

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"Neuro Ad Testing quickly gave us the insights we needed to optimise our advertising. As a result, we were able to successfully change our image in a short period of time. And, the research has contributed to a nice reward: the award for effective campaigns: Effie behavioural campaign short-term." Machiel van de Poll, Senior Customer Insights Manager, Tele2

Tele2 knows how to make effective ads

Tele2 Reclame-onderzoek Neuromarketing

Tele2's background

In 2016, Tele2 changed its image; from a cheap brand to a true value brand. Tele2 did this by positioning itself as a 'Fun Rebel'.

Their brand's mantra 'not because you need to, but because you can' was introduced. In little time, the mantra became a common phrase in the Netherlands.

On TV, the hip and funny ads were shown continuously, showing young people explaining what they want to do with their phones.

Tele2's research question

How can we optimise our ads so that we continue to grow and successfully change our brand image? 

How it's studied?

Effective ads work deep in the brain where emotions are activated and stored.  These stored unconscious emotions eventually influence consumer behaviour.

Therefore, an effective ad must activate the right unconscious emotions, which can be measured with fMRI.

There are 13 positive and negative unconscious emotions. The patterns generated by these 13 emotions are compared to the established benchmark for Effective, Likeable and Annoying ads. 

Neurensics tested all of Tele2 ads using:

  1. fMRI: measuring the unconscious emotions activated by the ads when test participants watch the ads in the MRI.

  2. Eye Tracking analysis: measuring which elements in the ads drew attention.

  3. An online questionnaire: used after the MRI scan to better interpret the activated emotions.

The Neuro Ad Test results

Tele2 ad 'because you can'


Tele2's first ad, 'Because you can', activated positive emotions (e.g. 'fun') as well as negative emotions (e.g. 'annoyance'). In order to effectively change the brand image, it was important that the ads activated more positive emotions.

The negative emotions in 'Because you can' were mainly activated by:

  1. The scene where the boy threw the hamster in the air. This activated Anger and Disgust, because it was seen as animal abuse.
  2. The scene where the boy jumps out of the zeppelin without a parachute. Here the emotions Fear and Danger were activated.

Tele2 used these insights to create more detailed briefings for their advertising agency. It immediately showed positive effects in their following ads.


Tele2 ad 'Online heroes'


The 'Online heroes' ad scored high on the positive emotions ofTrust andValue and had no overly high scores on negative emotions. The moments on social acceptance were especially well-received.

The feedback from the online questionnaire (BGI) gave Tele2 another good insight to improve its effectiveness: the proposition needed to be communicated more clearly.  


Tele2 wins the Silver Effie Award for effective advertising

Tele2 wint zilveren effie 2016 mede door Ad Testing

Tele2 knew exactly how to optimise their ads, with advice from Neuro Ad Testing. Neurensics tested the introduction ads and the sequels. This also contributed to Tele2 winning the Silver Effie Award in the category 'behavioural campaigns short-term'.

This award assesses short-term impact ads (max. 4 months) that have changed consumer behaviour, as reflected and proven by sales results. 

This result shows that ad testing leads to insights which can be used to optimise ads and increase ads' effectiveness.

Benefits of Neuro Ad Testing for Tele2

  1. Tele2 has the tools to make effective ads as they know which positive emotions the ads need to activate. 

  2. Within a short time, the continuous ad testing has led to Tele2 winning the Silver Effie Award in the category 'behavioural campaigns short-term'.

And now you:

  • How do your ads score on the established benchmark for Effective, Likeable and Irritating ads?
  • Do you want to make your ads even more effective?

Contact us to discuss your research possibilities.


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