In today’s crowded and competitive digital landscape, out-of-home (OOH) advertising represents a powerful channel for brands to reach their target audience with engaging messages.
OOH advertising, which consists of any traditional or digital visual media found outside of consumer homes, offers several benefits for brands, including raising brand awareness and driving purchase decisions. Plus, cutting-edge attribution models help brands understand their audiences with greater detail than ever before.
By working with an OOH advertising specialist, brands can do so much more than post a distribution of billboards. In this article, we’ll explore the importance and benefits of OOH advertising to brands and how the right partner can help you build a strategic plan for achieving your marketing campaign objectives.
The Importance of Out-of-Home Advertising for Brands
As mobile devices have become more ubiquitous in daily life, the importance of OOH advertising has grown. Why? Because with mobile devices, consumers can take immediate action after an OOH ad exposure.
According to Pew Research, more than 81% of U.S. adults own a smartphone. Your brand’s audience likely has a much higher rate of smartphone ownership. That means the vast majority of your target audience can take immediate action after viewing your brand messages out in the world.
The people who are most likely to encounter your messages are also likely to be the people you want to see your message — they’re active, they have robust social networks, and they’re on the move. By engaging with this audience in an active space, OOH advertising enables you to reach consumers who are primed to respond to visual stimulation in the world. As they encounter these messages more frequently, they will form impressions of your brand that last for the long term.
The connection between OOH ads and mobile devices cannot be understated. In fact, by combining OOH and mobile experiences, you can amplify your brand’s messaging. For example, when consumers see your ads and then perform a mobile search for your brand, they’ll discover new ways to engage with your business and ultimately make a purchase. Furthermore, thanks to today’s innovative OOH attribution models, you can cross-reference mobile location data from consumers against their interactions with your brand and, in doing so, optimize against business outcomes and future campaigns.
The Benefits of Out-of-home Advertising in a Digital World
OOH ads have many benefits for new and established brands. Unlike online advertising, which consumers can easily block with browser extensions, OOH ads meld seamlessly into the world where they become an accepted part of the outdoor environment.
Let’s take a look at some of the primary benefits of OOH advertising for brands.
Generating Brand Awareness
OOH advertising is one of the key drivers of brand awareness for modern brands. In fact, the Outdoor Advertising Association of America (OAAA) found that 48% of brands use OOH media to spread brand awareness, enabling them to grow their brand trust ratings by 24% on average.
With outdoor advertising, brands are able to reach an impressive 91% of U.S. consumers over the age of 16, according to a Nielsen study. Unlike online ads, which often impede user experience, OOH ads do not disrupt consumers as they shop, play or work. This enables customers to absorb the messaging without feeling intruded upon.
Geographic and Demographic Audience Targeting
With access to a robust OOH inventory, brands can target their advertising messages to highly targeted audiences. Ad placements are strategically designed to deliver your brand’s message where it will have the most impact.
Thanks to anonymized mobile data technologies, brands now have the ability to understand consumer travel patterns and optimize OOH ad placement accordingly. Plus, programmatic digital OOH enables further customization to deliver the right audiences with speed and flexibility. For example, your brand can adjust ad appearances based around your target audience’s daily commute from freeway billboards to gas station television.
Keep in mind that OOH is a lot more than billboard advertising. Indoor ad placements within shopping malls, sporting arenas and transportation hubs allow brands the opportunity to speak directly to consumers wherever they are likely to be.
OOH advertising allows you to get creative and make bold, compelling statements with your marketing. With the variety of media formats available, your team can be highly innovative in how they communicate brand messaging.
Beyond large bulletins, your brand could take over an entire wallscape. These building-sized advertisements offer long-term exposure in heavily trafficked areas. Visible from a long distance, wallscapes truly integrate your brand into the fabric of the city. The large canvas provides your creative team with space to develop eye-catching designs that simply can’t be ignored.
Other formats, like bus advertisements and taxi displays offer greater versatility, enabling you to drive frequency by spreading your brand messages throughout a particular geographic area where your target audience is likely to see them.
And of course, digital out-of-home (DOOH) advertising opens up even more opportunities, with the ability to develop dynamic messages that change based on triggers. You can even A/B test your creative copy to optimize your messaging based on real-world data.
Cost-Effective Audience Outreach
Thanks to the scalability and availability of inventory, OOH media is highly cost-effective for brands looking for local, regional or national reach. Unlike traditional media print or online digital media, OOH advertising offers long-term exposure over a two-week or four-week period at the same placement location. These ads are not as disposable as print ads and can’t be blocked with the click of a button. This prolonged exposure means that your audience will see your messaging more frequently, raising brand awareness and recall.
Considering that 56% of consumers surveyed by Nielsen trust OOH ads — compared to just 42% for online banner ads — this is a major opportunity for brands to connect with their audiences.
Although you’ll still see a lot of printed OOH inventory, the volume of digital screens available to advertisers is on the rise. This technology enables your team to develop dynamic marketing campaigns that are optimized to deliver results.
For instance, digital bulletins give you the power to create timely, relevant campaigns through trigger-based actions. So, you can modify your ad messages based on variables such as weather, time of day, sports scores, and similar events.
OOH innovations don’t end with consumer-facing media. Today, advertisers also benefit from advanced attribution reporting. This technology can show you who was exposed to your OOH ads and what actions those consumers took offline and online after that exposure. We’ll revisit this topic in more detail further down the page.
Drive Traffic To Online Touchpoints
Your next OOH campaign can greatly improve other aspects of your advertising media mix. Notably, an outdoor ad can actually drive traffic to your social media pages where you can encourage further engagement with your brand.
According to Nielsen, OOH ads have a high likelihood of activating online brand interactions. Of adults who were exposed to an OOH ad:
- 46% conducted an online search for more information about the brand
- 38% visited the brand’s Facebook page
- 25% visited the brand’s Instagram page
- 23% visited the brand’s Twitter page
By adding social media handles, QR codes, and calls-to-action (CTAs) to outdoor ads, you can encourage interested consumers to take the next step of the buyer’s journey.
How to Measure the Effectiveness of Your OOH Advertising Campaigns
Marketing and advertising analytics help brands to understand the impact of their efforts on real consumers. With deep insights, you can better understand your customers, their interests, and what drives them to take action. In addition, data analytics show you where your advertising dollars have the greatest return on investment, allowing you to optimize your spending over the long term.
OOH attribution reporting allows you to understand:
- How your marketing activities perform in the real world
- How to optimize and prioritize your next campaign
- How your target audience responds to specific brand messaging
To get these results, you need a partner that can obtain, analyze and report on consumer data. Here’s what that process looks like at a high level:
An OOH technology partner like Billups will analyze billions of daily location observations using anonymized mobile device IDs. This data is used to determine who was exposed to your ads as well as where and when those exposures occurred. This information also includes the length of each exposure, which is crucial for determining the effectiveness of formats that can vary from stationary bulletins to moving transit ads.
The reporting of this data will help you get a clear picture of the customer’s journey. Plus, you’ll understand which ads had the highest impact on important metrics like foot traffic and sales. Your technology partner will also compare these figures to pre-campaign data, so you can get a better sense of how your brand messaging impacted customer behavior.
With Billups, you’ll gain insight into important attribution metrics like:
- Location visitation
- Website visitation
- Brand awareness
- Audience profile
- Placement indexing
Because this data can help you reach new customers in addition to your existing audience, you can continually optimize future campaigns to focus on business growth. Leveraging look-alike audiences, your data partner can help uncover new opportunities for reaching audience segments that are new to your brand.
How an Out-of-Home Advertising Specialist Can Help You
With the right OOH advertising partner, your brand can develop intelligent campaigns that drive growth. Billups’ media experts and in-house data sciences can help you:
- Plan outdoor media placements to appeal directly to your target audience
- Buy media that matters along strategic points of your audience’s daily journey
- Report on campaign effectiveness and support your strategic, multi-channel media plans
Gaining the support of a strategic OOH partner takes the guesswork out of planning and drives key goals for your business, whether that’s increasing foot traffic to your physical stores or getting more eyes on your website. Your partner will work with you to understand your brand’s unique goals and develop a strategy that works for you and is personalized to your audience.
With the right OOH advertising partner, your brand can craft and deliver engaging messaging directly to your target audience. Using advanced analytics, you’ll be able to continuously improve your marketing strategy and achieve your operational goals.
Get in touch with your Billups managed and technology services specialists to learn more.