Immersion Neuroscience Index Reveals the Public Craves Direction From Its Elected Leaders, Not Celebrities, During a Crisis

Immersion Neuroscience Index Reveals the Public Craves Direction from its Elected Leaders, not Celebrities, During a Crisis (Graphic: Business Wire)

LOS ANGELES--()--Immersion Neuroscience, the world’s most advanced predictive software company unlocking neuroscience to measure what people love, announced today a new Immersion Index revealing people's reaction to celebrities’ vs. elected officials’ communications about the current COVID-19 pandemic.

Immersion researched the most effective way to share information with the public about coronavirus. This new study compares celebrities and their social media messages with elected officials.

“The best way to determine if communication is effective is to measure how well it "sticks" in the brain. Science has established that when the brain is immersed in information, it is remembered, shared with others, and acted on. Highly immersive information is what will reduce the spread of the coronavirus and save lives,” said Dr. Paul J. Zak, Founder of Immersion.

The research study: Immersion asked participants to turn on their Apple watches or other wearable sensors and emailed them six videos to view online. The videos ran for one-and-a-half to two minutes and featured President Trump; Vice President Pence, who leads the White House Coronavirus Task Force; Dr. Anthony Fauci, who leads the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and is a member of the Coronavirus Task Force; Georgia Governor Brian Kemp; singer Cardi B; and actor and former governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger, all speaking about the coronavirus outbreak.

The study revealed that communication about coronavirus by government leaders is significantly more effective than a celebrity rant or an offbeat video with miniature horses, for example.

The Immersion platform aggregated neurologic responses and returned an average Immersion value from 1-10 for each video.

Immersion Index results for communication effectiveness are:

  • Mike Pence: 6.28
  • Donald Trump: 4.24
  • Georgia Governor Brian Kemp: 4.24
  • NIAID Head, Dr. Anthony Fauci: 3.91
  • Actor, Arnold Schwarzenegger 3.24
  • Rapper, Cardi B: 2.96

Vice President Pence generated neurologic immersion that was 48% higher than the next most immersive speakers, a tie between President Trump and Governor Kemp. Dr. Fauci was a close third at 53% less immersive, while Arnold and Cardi B were at the bottom of the list at 61% and 64% less immersive than Mr. Pence.

The results show that fact-based videos from elected officials delivered without theatrics were significantly more immersive, meaning these are more likely to motivate actions by citizens.

“We salute celebrities for reminding the public to be safe. But, when times are tough, this study shows that brains know that experts provide the most valuable information. If you ask people which videos they "like" or find "entertaining," they will choose the stars over the experts. Extensive research has shown that "liking" has no relationship to what people do. In this time of crisis, action is what matters. That is why measuring neurologic immersion is so important,” said Immersion CEO Scott Brown.

Fifteen years of peer-reviewed research has proven that when the brain produces a specific set of unconscious responses called "immersion," it identifies an experience as valuable.

Immersion’s proprietary solution and software is the world's most accurate way to measure the brain's unconscious emotional responses to virtually any type of content – whether it’s video, music, live events, training, educational resources and more. Developed by distinguished research scientists, Immersion’s simple-to-use and scalable predictive SaaS platform democratizes neuroscience so that anyone can measure what people love at scale.

The Immersion platform is unique in its ability to perform distributed neuroscience, which becomes essential at a time when the world is sheltering in place. Immersion measures brain responses anyplace that people are using a mobile app that sends data to cloud servers. Algorithms developed by Immersion scientists infer brain activity from a small wearable sensor.

To learn more about Immersion, visit


Andrew Laszacs
Bob Gold & Associates

Release Summary

Immersion Neuroscience Index Reveals the Public Craves Direction from its Elected Leaders, not Celebrities, During a Crisis


Andrew Laszacs
Bob Gold & Associates