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DOOH Programmatic Digital Out of Home Creative

6 programmatic DOOH ads that rocked our world in 2022



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December 14, 2022 | 6 min read

The perfect advertising strategy balances art and science, creativity and data, emotion and logic

However, when it comes to programmatic, many campaigns often miss the mark a bit on the creative front as data tends to be relied upon to do the heavy lifting.

Over the past five years, there’s been a tendency to simply transfer creative from other channels into prDOOH as the platform established its place in the media mix. While this is a positive in that it enables more advertisers to easily benefit from the reach and impact of OOH, on the other hand it leaves an untapped creative optimization opportunity. In 2023, with prDOOH emerging from the nascent phase, we predict something of a revolution in creative strategy.

To help get the creative juices flowing into the new year, the JCDecaux UK programmatic team has put together this showcase of some of the most effective ads we’ve seen out in the wild this year.

The power of using location as context

For me, one of the standout campaigns of the year landed in early Autumn. In October, AB Inbev leveraged the power of hyper-local targeting to drive sales of their new Romola beer. Multiple creatives were used, each one calling out the closest venue serving Romola - in the example below just 167 meters from the ad.

The beauty of this campaign lay in the combination of the power of location as context and programmatic buying techniques to maximize efficiency. Plus, I love a pint (or two).

Solution-driven creative

For Philippa Evans (associate director – programmatic), Beconase stole the show thanks to their solution-driven creative that was “so contextually relevant you couldn’t help but take notice of it." Highlighting the local pollen count in the creative while showcasing Beconase’s product worked so well here because it communicated the problem and the solution in such an obvious way. Sometimes the simplest approach really is the best.

The data-driven approach packed another punch too. The data feed that ensured the local pollen count was accurately reflected in the creative was also used to switch the campaign on only when the pollen count reached a certain level to maximize efficiency.

It was another solution-driven creative that captured the attention of Kate Tovey (director of customer engagement). “I hate coming home to an empty fridge, so this campaign resonated with me the minute I heard the brief! A strategic combination of airport and railway inventory ensured that the campaign reached a wide audience with a shared problem.”

The real beauty of this campaign is the simplicity, the fact that it wasn’t overthought or over-complicated. Many of the challenges people face with prDOOH are a direct result of trying to do too much, for example integrating several data sources when you only need one or running hundreds of creative variations. When you distill a campaign down to the problem you’re solving – in this case an empty fridge – often the answer reveals itself. For Deliveroo the answer lay in location: airports and railways the places where people can’t avoid being in when they’re on their way home. Programmatic gave them the option to then be flexible when it came to campaign activation and optimise based on performance.

Appeal to impulsive consumers and those that like to plan ahead

Our programmatic sales lead, Laurence Saleh, loved Hungry Horse’s time and location-driven campaign that featured different offers based on where and when the ad was shown. “Campaigns like this really deliver. By combining location, time, and a great deal the creative maximizes attention”. This is a strategy that’s paid off for many advertisers with time-sensitive products or promotions as it appeals to both impulse-driven consumers who make decisions in the moment as well as those that like to plan ahead.

Reach incremental audiences

Natalie Dodoo (account planner – programmatic) gives a big thumbs up to Channel 5’s All Creatures Great and Small campaign. “I saw these ads everywhere and it made me think that even though I’d never heard of the show or seen it advertised anywhere else (I guess I didn’t fit the target audience for online campaigns) this show must be great, so I looked it up.”

From a strategic perspective, Natalie’s story highlights the fact that precision-targeted one-to-many mediums like prDOOH are great at capturing incremental audiences with added flexibility compared to traditional buys.

The omnichannel effect

And finally, our newest team member, programmatic optimization manager, Deepjyot Bakshi, was wowed by one of the last campaigns of the year promoting the highly anticipated Spotify Wrapped. “The creative here is spot on – it quickly and effectively gets the message across – one glance and it's instantly recognizable. It’s a great example of using prDOOH to prime your online audience by planting a seed.”

Spotify’s Wrapped 2022 programmatic campaign creative for the public screen harnesses attention with distinctive colors and patterns. It attracts the eye through the vivid color scheme, but also subtly conveys the CTA through the phrase “is here.”

Furthermore, it provides a fantastic link between the public and the private screen as Spotify is predominantly accessed via mobile devices and the Wrapped message is amplified by consumers sharing their Wrapped playlist on social media.

This is a great example of how programmatically delivered DOOH gives marketers additional data to use to optimize an omnichannel marketing funnel in an agile way.

Trends that will shape creative executions in 2023

As we move into 2023 with an increasing focus on advertising efficiency, and with consumer attention at an all-time premium, there will be increasing pressure on creative to deliver. To maximize the effectiveness of creative in prDOOH we will see a two-pronged approach: firstly, more robust creative testing looking specifically at how different creative executions capture attention in OOH environments. Secondly, we’ll see many more advertisers using dynamic creative optimization (DCO) to ensure maximum relevance.

DOOH Programmatic Digital Out of Home Creative


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