United Kingdom—Researchers at the University of Westminster conducting a study on activities that trigger mental responses have found that the brain reacts similarly when offered great shopping deals or when viewing porn. This will come as no surprise to many men who argued they are entitled to watch porn precisely because their wives and girlfriends are “addicted” to shopping. While previously on flimsy ground, they now have proof.
According to the Telegraph, 50 volunteers took part in the research, which was conducted on behalf of the Institute of Promotional Marketing, a U.K.-based trade association for the promotional marketing industry. Apparently, the university regularly undertakes studies on behalf of the institute in order to glean consumer behavior and trends.
In the current research, the volunteers were monitored for eye movement and emotional reactions to products placed before them. Responses were graded on a scale of one to ten, with ten the equivalent of experiencing severe trauma. Researchers already knew that results in the five to seven range are involuntarily elicited in response to viewing erotic images.
“One Marmite promotion, to get a free audio book featuring the children's character Horrid Henry, registered a score of up to 5.8 among the consumers,” reported the Telegraph. “Others including a discount couple for Cravendale milk and a Wallace & Gromit free gift with Kingsmill bread also scored particularly highly among the early results.”
Institute spokesperson Colin Harper said, "It's early days but these results indicate a correlation between high emotional response and sales uplift."
The problem, he added, has been to get consumers to buy a product after the promotion has ended. Porn, which can currently be found for free throughout the internet, is currently dealing with a somewhat similar issue.