OOH industry eyes boost through data collaboration

The out-of-home (OOH) advertising industry is undergoing an unprecedented level of cooperation by using data from within its own ranks and comparing it with information from third parties
to better contextualise how brands can communicate with audiences while on the move.  

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Speaking at Marketing Week’s Outdoor Works conference, partnered by The Outdoor Media Centre and six leading suppliers, advertisers told brand-side marketers that collaboration is driving improvements in the industry.

One of the main reasons behind this trend has been the industry’s collective £19m investment in its rebranded research body Route.

It uses GPS-tracking data from more than 28,000 individuals, to help chart the likelihood of consumers seeing OOH advertising billboards in the UK.

Justin Gibbons, creative director of Arena, said: “If we’re honest with ourselves, OOH advertising has been a bit like picking your nose with rubber gloves on. It feels okay but there’s something not quite right about it.

“But with Route we can get super-granular data for targeting around our locations. We can think about which kind of campaigns are working and when, and how this works with the population flow.”

For instance, OOH advertisers can take the raw Route data, cross-reference it with alternative data sets, such as from GPS navigation systems or Transport for London data, to better contextualise their communications.

This opportunity has already been identified by Posterscope, which is building a planning app to help advertisers target specific audience types by location, using third-party data sets combined with Route.

Gibbons adds: “This means I can put the focus on audience first as opposed to the location of the billboard first.”

Editor of Wired Magazine David Rowan presented information on how Google has filed a patent to see how those wearing its Google Glass are interacting with OOH advertising boards.

MediaCom managing partner Stefan Bardega also argued that OOH is one advertising medium where the emergence of digital has benefited the industry instead of detracting spend from it.

“One of the things that mobile will bring to OOH is a new wave of interactive data. In almost every way before, digital technologies disrupted traditional media in a negative way but these can add significant benefits to outdoor,” he said.

PHD Media managing director Verica Djurdjevic also explained how Government cuts in local authority funding are helping to boost opportunities for the OOH industry. Many of the local authorities that had proven difficult to deal with are now having to be more pragmatic about outdoor advertising in their boroughs, given how these revenues can help offset cuts in their budgets.

To see all the presentations from the Outdoor Works conference go to outdoorworks.marketingweek.co.uk

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