Mindspeller co-founder prof. Marc Van Hulle uses eeg to measure brand association strength

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Two brands were tested with related and unrelated associations.


We considered two video on demand brands, Netflix and Rex&Rio, and selected a set of words grouped in 4 categories that were either related (Television, Relaxation, and Price), in varying degrees, or unrelated (Unrelated) to the said brands.

The experiment started with both brands’ TV commercials, as a common reference for our participants. We then applied a semantic priming paradigm in which a brand logo (“prime”) was followed by a word (“target”), and the strength of the N400 response to the word used as an inverted measure of the association strength with the brand logo.


The EEG ERP protocol showed a difference while traditional surveys did not

We clustered the results and we could see that for Netflix the cluster with the strongest associations consisted of words related to Television. But for Rex&Rio it consisted of words related to Relaxation. We also evaluated the relationship between the two brands and determined which associations they share or which ones not. It turned out that associations related to Relaxation and Television distinguishthe two brands. Interestingly, survey data did not show any differencebetween the two brands as they were equally associated with Television and Relaxation. These findings show that our N400 technique can reveal brand associations, and natural categories thereof, that would otherwise go unnoticed when using conventional surveys. Source: Camarrone F, Van Hulle MM (2019). Measuring brand association strength with EEG: A single-trial N400 ERP study. PLoS ONE 14(6): e0217125. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0217125

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