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Millward Brown and Affectiva deliver new way to test emotional responses to ads


NEW YORK, NY — Millward Brown, a global leader in brand, media and communications research and Affectiva, a leading emotion measurement technology company today announced a partnership that will enable brand owners to gain deeper insight into the emotional impact of their TV advertising, by integrating Affectiva’s facial expression analysis technology (Affdex) with Millward Brown’s LinkTM ad copy-evaluation and optimization solution.

Millward Brown’s Link copy testing solutions are the ad development tools of choice among the world’s leading advertisers for over 20 years. Now brand owners can benefit from more granular data on which messages interest, amuse or confuse viewers through the inclusion of Affdex, which detects facial and head movements through a webcam and classifies them into emotional states. Because Affdex measures moment-by-moment, nonverbal communication, it captures additional diagnostics that surveys may miss, and it also works across cultures and geographical boundaries.

“Describing feelings in detail is never easy. By adding facial expression analysis to Link, brand owners can get at the emotional response that people might not be able to articulate in surveys,” said Graham Page, executive vice president of Millward Brown’s neuroscience practice. “By building this technology into our surveys, we can make non-verbal emotional measurement truly scalable and cost effective for the first time.”

Millward Brown and Affectiva have already worked together to research brand campaigns using this integrated approach on four continents, which includes using mobile phones in India to collect viewers’ responses.

“We already see world-class companies benefit from combining Link with Affdex to improve the emotional connection that consumers have with their brands,” said Dr. Rana el Kaliouby, co-founder and Chief Technology Officer at Affectiva. “Our science accelerates with every new facial response we encounter, making it very exciting to work with Millward Brown to drive the widespread use of Affdex"

Affectiva is a Massachusetts Institute of Technology spin off founded in 2009 by professor Rosalind W. Picard, Sc.D. and research scientist Rana el Kaliouby, Ph.D. to commercialize emotion technology inventions developed at the MIT Media lab including facial expression recognition technology originally invented by Dr. el Kaliouby.

About Affectiva
Founded in 2009 by members of the MIT Media Lab, Affectiva the leader in emotion measurement technologies used to understand how people feel in order to improve products and experiences. Affectiva’s customers include Fortune 500 companies, agencies and leading universities. Its products include the Q™, a wearable biosensor, and Affdex facial expression recognition technology. Affectiva is privately held with backing from the National Science Foundation and funding from WPP, Myrian Capital and the Peder Sager Wallenberg Charitable Trust, represented by Lingfield AB. For more information, visit

About Millward Brown
Millward Brown is one of the world’s leading research agencies and is expert in effective advertising, marketing communications, media and brand equity research. Through the use of an integrated suite of validated research solutions - both qualitative and quantitative - Millward Brown helps clients build strong brands and services. Millward Brown has more than 78 offices in 51 countries. Additional practices include Millward Brown’s Global Media Practice (media effectiveness unit), The Neuroscience Practice (using neuroscience to enhance traditional research techniques), Millward Brown Optimor (focused on helping clients maximize the returns on their brand and marketing investments), Dynamic Logic (the world leader in digital marketing effectiveness) and Firefly Millward Brown (a global qualitative research business). Millward Brown is part of Kantar, WPP’s insight, information and consultancy group.

About Link
Link is the world’s leading advertising evaluation and optimization solution. Over 80,000 Link for TV studies have been conducted since its launch in 1989. The full Link family includes Link 360 (for campaigns), Link for TV and other methods for print, outdoor, digital, radio, cinema ads and packaging.


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