Assessing Liberty Mutual Advertising Campaign

ForSight™ Platform Draws on Human Judgment; the Algorithm Analyzes According To Patterns of Text in Assessing Ad’s Success

Liberty Mutual Insurance invested heavily in an advertising campaign for one of the biggest television events of the year: March Madness.  At Crimson Hexagon, we were curious how much social engagement was fueled by this ad campaign. And, more importantly, we wanted to analyze how audiences and consumers engaged with the Liberty Mutual NCAA ad campaign.

While the Super Bowl trumps March Madness in per-second advertising spend, the media buy for March Madness extends over several weeks. The New York Times reports that Kantar Media projects that advertisers spend $613.8 million on commercials during the men’s basketball tournament in 2012.

In 2013, Liberty Mutual created an “Amateur Athletes” commercial as part of their “Humans” series, created by Hill Holliday. The Amateur Athletes commercial features, appropriately enough, a driveway basketball player who jumps for a dunk, only to pull the hoop down onto a car. In the narrative of the commercial, the basketball player is an innocent yet destructive force, yet Liberty Mutual will save the day.

How well did the major ad spend and custom basketball creative content serve the Boston-based Liberty Mutual Insurance?

By our measure, the ad campaign is serving Liberty Mutual very well. There were around 7,700 tweets specifically about the Liberty Mutual ad campaign during March Madness. Of the relevant tweets, 93% were positive about the campaign.

Liberty Mutual Advertising Campaign

While these are good metrics for Liberty Mutual, Crimson Hexagon’s ForSight™ can tell us even more. Since ForSight draws on human judgment and the algorithm analyzes according to patterns of text, rather than a set word tree or dictionary, we can determine the themes and drivers of engagement with the ads. Within the 93% of positive conversation, there is a distinction between engagement directly with the basketball-oriented creative content (12% of the overall conversation) and with engagement with the funny, hilarious, entertaining qualities of the ad campaign (81% of the overall conversation).

While it might seem like a subtle distinction between drivers of positive sentiment, this analysis can crucially inform Liberty Mutual and Hill Holliday about how to craft creative content and plan ad campaigns in the future.  Audiences were engaged by the basketball content, but the general hilarity of the “Humans” campaign inspired the more audience engagement.

Liberty Mutual Advertising Campaign Word Cluster

Liberty Mutual ran many spots throughout the NCAA men’s basketball tournament. This large ad buy could have backfired: the audience could have gotten saturated and annoyed over the course of several weeks and many commercials. However, the proportion trend over the course of the tournament shows that did not happen – negative opinions actually declined over the course of the tournament. Over the whole time period, only 7% of the conversation about the ad campaign was negative.

At Crimson Hexagon, we prize going beyond counts and drawing strategic insights from social media. If you’d like to learn how you can use Crimson Hexagon’s ForSight to analyze your ad campaign, request a free personal demo.





Written by Elizabeth Breese

As a sociologist and social media analyst bridging the academic and social media worlds, my aim is to analyze and interpret how people communicate in the public sphere.

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