Biometrics in advertising analytics

In advertising analytics, different biometric tools are used to test graphic content before it is released to the market. We take a look at the main biometric analysis tools that provide key insights from the end consumer's point of view.

The advertising landscape has evolved significantly under the current context of confinement. Many brands have been forced to look for new channels and more innovative ways to get their message across to the public and stand out from the information at hand.


The eyetracking or eye tracking is one of the most widely used biometric tools in advertising analysis. It is based on analysing the visual patterns of people in front of a stimulus, either on a digital screen or in a physical environment such as a supermarket, bank branch, shopping centre, public road, etc.

It is possible to analyse different graphic pieces and understand the visual behaviour of people in front of them, detecting areas of greater visual attention, if the main message is being seen and in what percentage, in what order different elements within an image are looked at, what is the first thing that attracts attention, if the main element captures the attention compared to the others, among other insights to be taken into account.

This tool is commonly used in advertising for A/B testing, where the brand can compare between different alternatives within a campaign, optimising results and ensuring that the strategic objectives of the campaign are met.

In the same way, eyetracking is very useful for the design and optimisation of websites by carrying out usability tests.

Fixationpoints: these are the specific points where the eye stops to gather information.
They last for fractions of a second (between 200-600ms) and are important for recognising the places where the person stops to analyse the stimulus.

Average attention span: this is the total amount of time people spend on average viewing an advertisement.
Depending on where our ad is placed on a website, in a shop or on the street, people will devote only a few seconds of attention, where the brand must strive to ensure that its message is captured in this brief interaction.

Areas of interest: within each advertising piece we find different areas of interest to analyse such as the main text, logo, product, characters, slogan, among others.
Within each area of interest, metrics are obtained that indicate how these areas perform in terms of visual attention within an advertising image.


The skin reveals important information about the emotions we feel when faced with different stimuli. Whether positive or negative emotions, as long as we have an emotional reaction, our skin will tell us.

Interesting, how so?

Every time we feel an emotion, be it happiness, nerves, surprise, fear, etc., changes are generated in the electrical conductivity of the skin, caused by the activation of the sweat glands in our body.

With electrodermal activity sensors, these electrical activations can be measured to analyse a person's emotional changes in response to a stimulus. For example, we can determine whether the person watching a commercial is experiencing different emotional changes, based on the levels of electrical activation and skin sweating.

By clicking here, you will see a case using GSR in the advertising analysis of two spots for the World Cup Russia 2018.


Many will remember the television series Lie to mewhere Dr. Lightman, with an exceptional ability to identify micro-expressions, could recognise whether a person was telling the truth or feeling a particular emotion.

The reality is not far from this concept. With facial coding software, we can detect emotions based on a person's facial micro-expressions in response to a stimulus.

How do we classify emotions?

A person's face can reveal a lot about what they are feeling at that moment, whether in conversation, at an event or in front of a YouTube video. These emotions can be classified into six main categories:

  • Happiness
  • Surprise
  • Disgust
  • Sadness
  • Fear
  • Anger

Many advertising campaigns rely on conveying different emotions to engage with the main message. Identifying whether or not a particular emotion is being triggered in scenes where audience reaction is expected is vital to rethink the content in time, thus avoiding a possible wasted investment if it goes to market and does not meet this emotional connection.

There are different ways to analyse consumer behaviour and understand how they react to advertising pieces such as a website banner, a TV commercial, a radio spot or a billboard. To understand in depth what the audience may feel or think about the brand, it is necessary to "invite them to the table" using these tools in advertising analysis.

Let's talk. Contact us for further information. 

Freddy Linares
Freddy Linares