"These methods can substantially increase sales in individual industries, added the researchers."
New York, April 12 - The secret to getting more bang for your ads lies in the face of the models, finds a study.
Merely changing the face of a model in an ad increases the number of potential purchasers by as much as 8 percent on average, the study contends.
It also detailed a technique for zeroing in on the right faces for your ads.
This technique, called the eigenface method, could transform the current subjective process of screening faces into a scientifically automated one, the study maintains.
This technique will revolutionise the field of ad design, said Min Ding, a professor at Pennsylvania State University, an author of the study.
The eigenface method is widely used for face recognition purposes in other fields, including personal device logons, human-computer interaction, and law enforcement's tracking of suspects.
The eigenface method aims to identify each face by a small set of key dimensions that together explain the variations in human faces.
Ad agencies, according to the study, could use four steps to employ this technique in ad design: Create a single database containing perhaps a thousand or more faces of professional models; represent each face in the database with a set of eigenface weightings; measure the facial preferences of target customers in a product category; and identify the top faces that best match target customers' facial preferences for the specific product category.
These methods can substantially increase sales in individual industries, added the researchers.
The study will be published in the forthcoming issue of 'Marketing Science', a journal of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences.