Skip to Main Content

How Upsiide Can Predict The Success of Your Idea: An Oscars Case Study

Using Upsiide’s idea screening tool, we analyzed how this year’s Oscars Best Picture award nominees matched public opinion.

Upsiide Blog Oscars

Every year, the Academy Awards gather esteemed arts & culture industry professionals to choose the best movies, artists and filmmakers of the year. And every year, the public’s vote seems to clash with the critics.

Social media is buzzing around this time, with viewers posting how the Oscars always “get it wrong” and which movie should have gotten the award. Well, we decided to put public opinion to the test.

Using our Upsiide platform, we decided to ask consumers which movie deserved to win the Oscars Best Picture Award this year. A few days before the Oscars event, we showed respondents 10 movies that got nominated for Best Picture and asked them to tell us which ones they thought should win. 

Here are the details of the study:

  • Base size: 200

  • Canada, US

  • 18+

  • Male and female

TLDR: Want to see the results more visually? Check out this infographic we made for you.

If a respondent thought a movie deserved the award, they swiped right. If they didn’t think so, they swiped left. And if they swiped right on 2 movies, they were asked to choose a favorite. You know, the usual drill.

So which movie deserved to win?

According to North Americans, the movie that should have won the Oscars Best Picture award is… drumroll please Top Gun: Maverick. 

This movie won out across most subgroups with an Idea Score of 72 and became a clear winner among the public. 

The other top movies are Avatar: The Way of Water (Idea Score of 68) and All Quiet on the Western Front (58).

As we were looking at this top 3 list (and beyond, for that matter), we noticed a trend. It seems like the ideas ranked in Upsiide almost match their box office ranking in real life. 

Correlation of 0.88.

Correlation of Upsiide Scores vs Box Office

Quick note: We found box office numbers for all movies except for All Quiet on the Western Front. But something tells us that the movie generated more money than the contenders below it. 

The box office numbers pretty much align with how people voted for them in Upsiide, with the exception of Women Talking, which grossed lower than Triangle of Sadness and Tár.  

So what does it mean?

We think it proves that Upsiide can predict an in-market performance of ideas (in this case, it was movies). By understanding consumer feedback, we were able to forecast which ideas were more likely to win out with the public in real life. 

It’s interesting that the relationship between Idea Score and box office results is exponential, not linear (that’s visualized by the curved line of best fit in the chart). We have witnessed this in the past. This means that having an Idea Score of 80 is more than twice as good as having an Idea Score of 40. Launching ideas into the market with strong Idea Scores makes every element of your go-to-market plan much easier because you are supporting ideas with strong consumer demand.

This example reminds us of how innovation research is done today. We notice that internal teams tend to put hypotheses on which ideas will win and ignore how consumers might feel about those ideas. 

We almost think that Academy Awards critics are just like those internal teams - they make decisions based on, essentially, favoring niche attributes instead of looking at public opinion. They know the industry so well that they are biased by things that general consumers don’t care about, and they can be swayed by internal politics and groupthink. Thinking again about the Oscars, that’s probably why they’ve often been criticised for being rigged.

Compared to the film critics, however, the internal teams actually have to make business decisions. And sometimes, these decisions can be biased and, ultimately, lead to unsuccessful innovation.

That’s why we believe that vetting things internally just doesn’t work. As someone working for the brand, you aren’t a consumer yourself, so you wouldn’t know exactly how an idea would perform with your target audience. That’s why tools like Upsiide exist - they help clients get an impartial view of their consumers.

To conclude

This study proves that Upsiide’s idea screening methodology can forecast how well new ideas will resonate with consumers in the real world. Unlike internal teams and critics, Upsiide provides an unbiased view into the minds of your target audience.

Loved the results and want to share them with your network? Click below to access a handy infographic.