Vinod Venkatraman, PhD
Assistant Professor, Marketing and Supply Chain Management
Fox School of Business, Temple University
Title: Consumer Neuroscience: Moving Beyond Hype
Abstract: The first decade of research in decision neuroscience has seen great progress in identifying neural processes underlying human judgment and decision making. The emphasis is now beginning to shift from basic science research to applied work in the fields of economics, finance, public policy and marketing, among others. Progress in the area of consumer neuroscience has been particularly noteworthy, spurred to a greater extent by practitioners’ interest. Many of the largest marketing research companies and advertising agencies currently have neuromarketing divisions (e.g., Nielsen, Ipsos, Millward Brown), with clients that span an impressive list of brands (e.g., Google, Campbell’s, Estée Lauder, Fox News). Yet, considerable skepticism exists about the value of neural methods like fMRI in marketplace settings. Here, I will discuss two recent studies where we used several neurophysiological methods to predict the effectiveness of marketing communications. Across these studies, I will demonstrate how we can benchmark the unique contribution of these methods in predicting real-world market outcomes, relative to traditional market research metrics. I will discuss the implication of these findings for marketing theories, research and practice.
About: Dr. Venkatraman is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Marketing, and also the Associate Director of the Center for Neural Decision Making at the Fox School of Business, Temple University. Dr. Venkatraman joined Temple University in July 2011 after completing his PhD in Psychology and Neuroscience at Duke University. His research involves the use of behavioral, eye tracking, neurophysiological and neuroimaging methodologies to study the effects of task environment, state variables, and individual traits on decision preferences and consumer behavior. A core emphasis of his research is also in the application of findings from the laboratory to real-world decisions in the areas of consumer financial decision making, public policy, and marketing communications. Dr. Venkatraman’s research has been published in leading scientific journals and has also been covered by several popular media outlets including BBC, Forbes magazine, National Public Radio, LA Times, and Newsweek.