Since the early days of advertising, top brands have aimed to create connections with consumers to sell their products. A positive emotional response to an ad creates an attachment in the mind of the consumer, thus strengthening brand loyalty and increasing sales. But too often brands rely on formulaic processes and copycat messaging to write search ad copy resulting in generic ads that look the same and fail to motivate the consumer to take action. Advertisers sacrifice the art of human connection and individuality for the sake of programmatic scale.


In online advertising, brands see the greatest success in ads that drive an emotional response. A recent Boost Media study on paid search ad copy proves that ads containing words that appeal to consumers’ emotions perform better than those that appeal to vanity.


When we ran a side-by-side comparison of 32 different words used in a leading shopping network’s ad copy, we were surprised by the results. The CTR, or click-through-rate, which typically indicates interest in purchasing, was 50 percent greater for ads that used the word “feel” versus the word “look.” An internal and emotional connection evoked by the ad copy was  more successful in driving action than one that appealed to the purely exterior benefit of looking good. In short, these consumers would rather “feel beautiful” than “look beautiful.”


Our study also revealed that words such as “natural” and “healthy” had higher click-through rates than words such as “gorgeous” and “great” for products in the beauty category. As in the example above, these metrics show that consumers are more likely to show intent to purchase a product that claims it will make them feel good about their natural selves rather than help them attain an external result.

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Our data consistently proves that consumers are more likely to click on ads that connect with them. Yet creating emotional connections in search ads across thousands of keywords has been nearly impossible to do. Instinctually, advertisers rely on powerful machines and technical platforms to solve this problem at scale. But writing emotionally compelling text is a job that humans are best suited for, not machines.


People wrote the ads we tested in this study, not computers or templates. The Boost Media methodology stems from the essential need for a human element in messaging, and our platform leverages a curated network of professional copywriters to achieve this. Only by marrying the best of what people and machines have to offer can marketers programmatically scale while staying rooted in human emotion. One-size-fits-all messaging neither differentiates the brand nor compels consumers to action. When digital messaging becomes more emotional like one-to-one conversations and appeals to the consumer’s true needs and desires, then marketers feel good about the results.

Want to learn more about how Boost Media helps top brands optimize ad creative at scale? Download the full study here.



About Boost Media

Boost Media increases advertiser profitability by using a combination of humans and a proprietary software platform to drive increased ad relevance at scale.

The Boost marketplace comprises over 1,000 expert copywriters and image optimizers who compete to provide a diverse array of perspectives. Boost’s proprietary software identifies opportunities for creative optimization and drives performance using a combination of workflow tools and algorithms. Headquartered in San Francisco, the Boost Media optimization platform provides fresh, performance-driven creative in 12 localized languages worldwide.