Clickheads offered ‘self diagnosis’ and ‘support’ in comic new IAB UK campaign


A new campaign to help members of the ad industry identify if they are Clickheads has been released by IAB UK as the digital advertising body continues its quest to wean people off click-through rates.

Activity includes a downloadable pamphlet, which has been created with the knowledge that the current economic uncertainty will likely see reformed Clickheads slip back into their old ways as they face growing pressure to justify spend and prove effectiveness to clients.

Clickhead coaching

This is supported by a series of short-form videos (first one below) where the IAB’s in-house #Clickhead coach talks marketers through how they can take steps towards healthier digital measurement.

The campaign draws on neuroscience research to outline the six innate biases everyone has that combine to make CTRs so attractive in challenging times.

By signposting these biases – which include cognitive dissonance and familiarity bias – the IAB aims to help potential Clickheads overcome them and seek out better digital measurement strategies.

James Chandler, CMO, IAB UK, said: “It is widely accepted by people with more knowledge of neuroscience than me that, in times of uncertainty and instability, our brains are programmed to avoid risk and stick to tried and tested strategies – even if we rationally know that they are not the best option.

“The Clickhead that is inside all of us will be harder to silence when the pressure is on.

“What we’re hoping to do with this campaign is help stop marketers in their tracks and encourage them to make better measurement choices for them and their clients.”

Those who are keen to resist becoming a Clickhead are encouraged to turn to IAB UK’s Measurement Toolkit, which offers a host of more effective ways to measure digital advertising campaigns – from market mixed modelling to attribution and controlled experiments.

This activity marks the fifth year of IAB UK’s ongoing campaign to reform Clickheads. Launched in 2019 with the infamous ‘Don’t be a Clickhead’ tagline, past creatives have taken the form of an undercover documentary, a recovery meeting and a Tinder-style dating app.