Out of Home Advertising is Moving Towards a Digital Renaissance

Out of Home Advertising is Moving Towards a Digital Renaissance


Out of home advertising is everywhere you look. According to the Outdoor Advertising Association of America (OAAA), OOH traces back to obelisks in ancient Egypt, and includes circus posters and the infamous Coca Cola holiday campaigns in the early 20th century. Now, this channel is undergoing a digital makeover.

“The physical world is becoming more and more connected, and as digital screens, mobile devices, free high-speed WiFi, proximity networks, and so on continue to become ubiquitous, your journey through the world will become more and more like a web browsing experience, with access to information and opportunity based on time, place and contextual data,” said Miko Rahming, senior vice president of innovation at creative and tech company Intersection to CMO.com.

Although we are moving into a more technological world, OOH is still an underappreciated form of advertising that is not going away anytime soon. Here’s how this channel will adapt to our world’s changes:

Better together: billboards and social media – New media channels don’t replace older ones, but rather amicably coexist. The integration of data and technology means that advertisers can play with these different channels together, while incorporating the sensory experiences, feelings and actions that digital doesn’t have.

OOH has access to data – Billboards are starting to get smarter now, with the ability to derive data from on and offline sources. Proximity technology enables marketers to tap into mobile data, seeing how many people drive or walk by a certain location, how often they do so, and what type of technology (smartphones, tablets, etc) they have.

Measuring data leads to optimization – Noted partnerships between Clear Channel and measurement companies like Place or PlaceIQ allow marketers to explore the behavior of their OOH audience after they have been exposed to certain messages. Companies are also partnering with mobile panel providers, which in turn boost awareness of mobile apps.

Consumers still have to go outside – OOH will endure, especially when advertising to college students, because they have to go outside in order to get from class to class, visit friends, or go out downtown. “We are creatures of habit – we drive down the same highways, we take the same trains, and we pass the same billboards,” said Jeff Tan, vice president of strategy for OOH communications agency Posterscope.

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