The effects of out-of-home digitisation
London - Monday, 19th of July, 2021

In recent years, the technology has caught up with the billboard industry to the point where we’re seeing a substantial growth of the digital-out-of-home advertising.

While the static OOH industry is staying more or less stagnant, the DOOH, with its dynamic and more flexible opportunity to communicate the messages to market, has shown a growth of on average 16% year on year.

Improved user targeting with responsive and adjustable messaging.

The overall benefits of traditional OOH have been known for years, with a study finding that consumers are 48% more likely to interact with a digital ad after being exposed to an OOH ad first. Out-of-home digitisation brings with it more commercial benefits than many stakeholders realise, with the lead one being improved user targeting. The ability to host enhanced content at the right location and the right time exponentially increases the success of the message. Digital approaches to OOH advertising have proven to convert to more effective campaigns, with lower costs and better integration into the general marketing mix than the conventional OOH.

The global pandemic has now further added speed to this digital innovative transformation, adding a new depth and a somewhat unexpected twist to the significance and usage of DOOH. With DOOH, the content can quickly be amended to any current situation. An example of this is the cooperation between Clear Channel and NHS, when the content throughout the pandemic was adjusted to reflect the governmental emergency messaging regarding the COVID-19 virus.

This is unsurprisingly equally true for commercial campaigns. The pandemic has shown us how quickly things can change. Accounting for the typical planning, production and implementation times, without DOOH, many companies wouldn’t have had time to effectively fine-tune their messaging to the nowadays everchanging government restrictions. A great example of this is the ride-hailing and food delivery company Uber, who launched their “Plans are back” digital campaign almost immediately after the lifting of lockdown mid-April 2021.

Innovative technologies unlocking creativity and results.

Usage of DOOH also allows for a more creative and eye-catching form of advertisement with brighter colours, movement, and a lot more convenience. The ability to send your message as a video, animation or simply a flashing slogan is proven to grab the attention of your audience better than static images. Recent developments in technology even go as far as allowing for interactive campaigns, sure to leave a more significant imprint on the viewers.

Innovative DOOH technologies have surpassed their infancy stages long ago. The complex analytics tools that have been developed in recent years, like the Clear Channel’s RADAR®,  are powered by extensive datasets enabling companies to monitor mobile data with insights of movement and behaviours of the passers-by. Other market giants have used DOOH as an opportunity to deliver an immediate or scheduled extended campaign to mobile when a targeted user is passing nearby the poster location.

Sustainable environmental and economical benefits.

Keeping up with sustainable market trends is not a pioneering move anymore. Companies that do not wish to fall behind cannot afford to ignore including sustainability perspectives in their strategies on every possible level.

Using digital screens as an alternative to the standard printed billboards is critical in terms of sustainability gains. OOH’s digitisation’s overall reduction in carbon print is ample. The transition has been proven to lead to direct improvements such as better air quality, saving of trees, use of less energy, and reduced need for disposal of waste materials.

The enhancements can be measured in various scopes, the most obvious one being the decrease in the need for materials production. However, just this extends beyond simply the number of trees that need to be cut down for paper on regular billboards. Adding to that comes the economic and environmental footprint that production of printing materials causes, both in terms of funds as well as CO2.

When we add in the economic and environmental improvements stemming from reduced vehicular trips needed in both production, installation, upkeep and disposal of the physical billboards, the benefits of transitioning to DOOH become quite clear.

In comparison, this entire process for a digital campaign comes at a fraction of a cost.

Enabling cities of the future.

One of the Sustainable Development Goals set in 2015 by the United Nations states the objective to “make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable”. The environmental benefits of digitisation of OOH directly support this and prompt the growth of sustainable and “smart” cities.

A DOOH screen with adjustable messaging and minimal upkeep requirements is fitting much better into the objectives of a smart city than a conventional printed billboard. The diminished production cost also allows for greater flexibility in accommodating non-commercial campaigns.

The government recognises the possibilities the transition offers, especially with the ability to transmit amber alerts, public campaigns and other emergency government messaging using commercial OOH screens. In fact, the report "The Smart City Market: Opportunities for the UK”, produced by the UK’s government’s Department of Business Innovation and Skills, mentioned digital advertising as one of the mediums needed in order to transform a city into a „smart” one.

Lastly, a DOOH advertisement is greatly improving the usability as well as visual benefits of any space where it is installed, sometimes even lifting up the general value of the property or the area. All this means that there is a general support from the government’s side in the drive towards the DOOH transition, as it benefits the society as a whole in its development towards sustainable cities of the future.

Do not hesitate to get in touch with Wildstone if you want to find out whether your property can be used to install a DOOH screen. Equally, contact us if you’re interested in transforming your current out-of-home advertisement asset portfolio and we’ll be happy to assist you on your digitisation journey.