Why Advertisers Are So Keen to Get Outdoors

The Cannes Effectiveness Lions Awards 2014 featured a spectacular showing from outdoor, boasting 44% of total campaign entries and no less than 92% of all shortlisted entries. In that respect, outdoor was second only to social media, which featured in every single shortlisted entry. The commentary suggested, Outdoor seems to be increasingly a strategic choice for lower budget campaigns and may be a way to quickly achieve mass coverage in markets where television audiences have become fragmented.

Whilst it has been estimated that £50m has been spent on new advertising equipment in each of the last five years, consumer research by Nielsen reveals that 96 of the top 100 UK advertisers are finding a place for outdoor in their brand communications. This is solid evidence of media owners’ confidence in the future of outdoor, as they begin to consolidate poorly-performing sites in an effort to deliver quality over quantity.

Digital revenues are seen to be the source of this growing trend. As this quarter sees an overwhelming 30% rise in digital revenues, a significant two-thirds of the Outdoor Media Centre‘s 35 members now deliver some digital offering. This proposition underlines Ocean Outdoor’s recent move to acquire Birmingham outdoor company Signature.

Ad signage has grown to complement, and not clash with, directional signage, encouraging travellers and shoppers to interact in a number of public spaces. Media planners continue to demonstrate a broad range of outdoor equivalents, including trigger-led campaigns consisting of updated live sports scores, pollen count, and local recruitment opportunities amongst many others.

The following three factors contribute towards the positive feelings surrounding the future of OOH:

1) Ever-growing audience

Out-of home’s sweet spot has become the young, urban, mobile, affluent, and connected individual. This light TV viewing audience makes an excellent counterweight to other media, offering incremental reach and frequency, and a balancing of impacts in key demographic groups.

2) The active space

‘Active space’ can be defined as the context within which an ad is located. Skin conductivity research reveals that people are 33% more alert out of home than when indoors at home. Street research also tells us that seven out of ten people you reach out of home are in active purchase mode. A state of mind suggesting they are actually out there with the purpose of buying something, which can ultimately lead to a growth in brand consideration.

3) Visual branding opportunity

OOH creates lasting impressions by using large-scale creative imagery that has a way of lasting in our memories. According to Les Binet of adam&eveDDB, the branding effects of outdoor media are on a par with the branding effects of television.

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