Neuromarketing – Hype or Hope? Are there relevant consequences of the latest results of neuro sciences for media research?

Eleven leading German neuro-scientists introduce their remarkable “Manifest about the Presence and the Future of Brain Sciences”1) with the words: “Considering the enormous progress of brain sciences in the last years the impression may arise that our research is close to snatch its final mysteries from the brain.” In the media you can find a lot of reports which feed this impression. And more specifically you also can find some market researchers praising the superiority of neuro-economic approaches and methods2) over traditional ones. The subject of this paper is to give an overview of the actual state of neuromarketing research and to discuss some potential consequences for media research. This cannot be an exhaustive or even complete overview because the respective literature is already very comprehensive and referring to several scientific disciplines (neuro physiology, biochemistry, psychology, business economics, statistics, to name only some of them). So I’ll give a subjective picture from a media researcher’s perspective and rather formulate some hypotheses than draw scientific “conclusions”. First of all I’ll give a rough impression of how our brain works taking as an example the situation “you see an ad in a magazine”.

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