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Breakfast champions and cereal offenders: Australians judge the best and worst of breakfast food advertising

Roy Morgan Research has measured the spontaneous reactions of Australians to eight breakfast food television commercials covering products from Sanitarium, Kellogg’s, Nestle, Uncle Toby’s and Devondale.

A tall teenaged boy kisses Mum goodbye. Surfing at sunrise. Hypnotising taste. Nutritious energy. Superfood. Supermum. Stupid dad. And a public plaza scale that weighs women as ‘Fabulous’. Yes, it’s breakfast advertising. But how much do Australians like these ads?

Roy Morgan Research has measured the spontaneous reactions of Australians to eight breakfast food television commercials covering products from Sanitarium, Kellogg’s, Nestle, Uncle Toby’s and Devondale.

Throughout each ad, the Reactor recorded and graphed the positive or negative feelings of viewers, revealing which ads were most (or least) likeable overall, and pinpointing when and how different target audiences reacted in real time.

And the winner is... Weet-Bix: ‘100% Ready’

The most-liked ad was the ‘100% Ready’ campaign for Weet-Bix, where bowls of cereal prompt a growing boy’s milestones. The spot had the most consistent likeability across all age groups, but did skew toward females (who were especially pleased to see the boy, now a fully grown and shaggy-haired teen, still kiss proud Mum goodbye).  

The ad’s overall R-Score (average total likeability) was 59, scoring highest in all measures including Cut Through (first 10 seconds), Hot Zone (% of people scoring over 70) and End Score (last 3 seconds).

Other well-liked spots include those for Up&Go (jogging, cycling and surfing at the crack of dawn), Crunchy Nut (which hypnotises a businessman out of his first-class seat), and Uncle Toby’s Oats (irony abounds as Mum calls daughter a pioneer for discovering that oats is a ‘superfood’).

Divided audience reactions meant scores for Devondale’s Fast Start drink and Kellogg’s Special K were a bit lower, albeit still positive overall:

Although 18-34 year-olds enjoyed watching Dad express disgust at his daughter’s painting (turns out it was just ‘soy aftertaste face’), those 50+ did not approve. And while women cheered as Radiance and Confidence supplanted kilograms in Special-K’s feminine utopia, men just sat and watched, unreactive, waiting for it all to be over.

Two ads scored in the unlikeable range, with an R-Score below 50: Mum learning the merits of Milo’s ‘nutritious energy’ for busy children scored 48, but even this was 10 points ahead of the ‘New Product Watch’ (by Brand Power) spot for liquid Nutri-Grain or Coco Pops. The infomercial format quickly turned off both male and female viewers of all ages; by the time we discover that “8 out of 10 mums recommend” the product, the ad is bottoming out at just 33—highly unlikeable.

Michele Levine, CEO, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“Our Reactor testing reveals that Australians on the whole respond positively to the bright and bouncy world of breakfast food advertising.

“The main exception is the ‘Product News’ style used by Kellogg’s to advertise liquid versions of Nutri-Grain and Coco Pops. Not only did audiences unequivocally rebuff this ad, but it scored poorly on subsequent product recall tests. Although the Milo cereal ad for Nestle was not ‘liked’ in the real-time Reactor test, it subsequently had over 50% total recall among respondents—the highest of all eight ads.

“Today, when people can switch off, skip ads, or alternatively share them via social media, likeability is more important than ever—and exponentially more valuable than recall.”

Click to learn more about the Reactor.

For comments or more information please contact:

Michele Levine, CEO, Roy Morgan Research
Telephone: +61 (3) 9224 5215
Michele.Levine@roymorgan.com

About Roy Morgan Research

Roy Morgan Research is the largest independent Australian research company, with offices in each state of Australia, as well as in New Zealand, the United States and the United Kingdom. A full service research organisation specialising in omnibus and syndicated data, Roy Morgan Research has over 70 years’ experience in collecting objective, independent information on consumers.

In Australia, Roy Morgan Research is considered to be the authoritative source of information on financial behaviour, readership, voting intentions and consumer confidence. Roy Morgan Research is a specialist in recontact customised surveys which provide invaluable and effective qualitative and quantitative information regarding customers and target markets.