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Study finds cinema is number-one media platform for attention when measured against any other video platform

Cinema advertising network National CineMedia (NCM®) has announced the release of the first US cinema attention measurement study conducted by Lumen, the leading technology company for attention measurement, in collaboration with dentsu, the agency leader in attention.

The study finds that ads played in cinemas ranked number one for consumer attention when measured against all other video platforms. Other key insights include:

  • Greater attention score: Cinema attention scores were four to seven times greater than all other video channels including TV, CTV, social and digital ads, across a variety of brands and categories.
  • Significantly more consumers watching: Two-and-a-half times more consumers watched ads playing in cinema compared to TV and CTV – 97% for cinema ads versus 38% for TV and 35% for CTV ads.
  • Longer duration: Consumers watched cinema ads for a longer duration compared to other video platforms – three times more than for TV and CTV and up to ten times more than social media.
  • Correlation with recall and choice: A direct correlation was found between attention metrics and brand recall and brand choice – higher attention metrics lead directly to enhanced performance of the advertising, which can result in increased sales lift, foot traffic and app downloads.

The study used Lumen’s proprietary eye-tracking technology to determine attention metrics and applied questionnaires and brand-choice methodologies to correlate the impact of the ad attention on subsequent recall and intention to purchase.

Wendy’s, adidas and 10 other brands across retail, automotive, apparel, CPG, QSR, telecom, entertainment and pharma participated in the study.

NCM’s cinema attention metrics will enable dentsu to determine the value of that attention, having combined it with cost and recall scores, and compare it to other channels and platforms in their broader database. Their teams will now be able to include cinema as part of the overall decision-making process using those metrics and benchmarks.

“As we celebrate the fifth-year anniversary of our dentsu Attention Economy initiative, we know that attention metrics can increase the effectiveness of media plans and we are eager for broader adoption across the industry. We’re thrilled that NCM has taken this step to expand the industry’s overall understanding of attention by testing in cinema, and the results speak for themselves. With a proven, captive and attentive audience, we can leverage the attention data we have to understand how to incorporate cinema as part of an overall channel mix,” says Joanne Leong, VP, Global Partnerships & Planning at dentsu.

“If there’s one thing we’ve learned over more than ten years tracking attention metrics, it’s that you never know what advertisement or medium will be the most engaging for consumers. We are thrilled to have worked with NCM to track cinemagoers’ attention when viewing ads in the cinema. This important study will help shape how advertisers view their in-cinema advertising strategy,” adds Mike Follett, Managing Director of Lumen Research.

“We are seeing the marketplace start to shift from the long-time legacy metric of exposure to the more relevant new measure of attention when analysing the relative value of media platforms. Lumen’s new attention study proves what we have always believed – that cinema advertising is the best medium for brands to reach and engage our young, diverse, and highly valuable audience,” adds Mike Rosen, Chief Revenue Officer at NCM.


Cinemagoers were recruited to participate in the study and watch a showing of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever in Los Angeles, CA. Participants agreed to be filmed and were told to act as they normally would from the moment they walked into the auditorium. The environment was set up to mimic a regular moviegoing experience. Participants had snacks and phones, and were able to get up as needed. With six screenings over the course of two days, 151 adults aged 18+ were exposed to the NCM pre-show with ads in November 2022. Discreetly arranged infrared cameras recorded respondents and measured whether they were paying attention to the screen. Footage was filmed so that Lumen could detect pupils and body movements in the dark.

TV and CTV Norms:  TVision data (Jan-Dec 2022, n: 5000 Homes)

Digital Norms:  Attention Economy figures based on US Lumen Mobile Passive Panel Data (2021, Impressions = 3,775)

For more information:

Maryum Sheikh, Press Lead, The Digital Voice™

About National CineMedia, Inc.

National CineMedia (NCM) is America’s Movie Network. As the largest cinema advertising network in the U.S., we unite brands with young, diverse audiences through the power of movies and popular culture. NCM’s Noovie® pre-show is presented exclusively in 47 leading national and regional theater circuits including AMC Entertainment Inc. (NYSE:AMC), Cinemark Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:CNK) and Regal Entertainment Group (a subsidiary of Cineworld Group PLC, LON: CINE). NCM’s cinema advertising network offers broad reach and unparalleled audience engagement with over 20,100 screens in over 1,600 theaters in 195 Designated Market Areas® (all of the top 50). NCM Digital and Digital-Out-Of-Home (DOOH) go beyond the big screen, extending in-theater campaigns into online, mobile, and place-based marketing programs to reach entertainment audiences. National CineMedia, Inc. (NASDAQ:NCMI) owns a 74.6% interest in, and is the managing member of, National CineMedia, LLC. For more information, visit and

About Lumen:

Lumen is the leading attention technology company in the world, with large-scale attention panels in the US and the UK, and temporary panels across many other global markets. Lumen’s eye-tracking technology converts the webcam on a user’s phone or desktop computer into a high-quality eye-tracking camera, capturing not only what users could see, but also what they do in fact look at. Lumen’s eye-tracking panels are recruited to be nationally representative and fully GDPR compliant.

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