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Brand Strategy Out-of-home Media

Here’s why investing in OOH is more crucial than ever

By Alex Caldwell, Senior OOH specialist



The Drum Network article

This content is produced by The Drum Network, a paid-for membership club for CEOs and their agencies who want to share their expertise and grow their business.

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December 14, 2022 | 6 min read

Not bullish on out-of-home advertising? For The Drum’s out-of-home advertising Deep Dive, Known’s Alex Caldwell tells us why you should be.

A billboard for Just Eggs

Is OOH a unique advertising channel? / Credit: Known

Worried that out-of-home (OOH) doesn’t work? Think again. OOH is an extremely powerful tool in our media toolkit, and we’ve seen myriad ways it can attract consumers. The ability to marry thoughtful creative with contextually relevant placements continues to push the momentum of the medium in the industry.

According to The Business Research Company, the global OOH advertising market is only growing. It’s expected to reach $34.6B by 2026, at a compound annual growth rate of 5.5%. These numbers say it all. It’s time to make OOH part of your advertising strategy.

Here’s what we’re seeing at Known about the power of OOH and why we believe that no brand in 2023 should rule out the medium.

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The creative potential is unmatched

OOH advertising is fundamentally different from any other channel. Not only is it the only channel where ad blocking isn’t possible; it’s one where there is always an opportunity to go big.

With other channels, you’re confined to a screen and limited in creating new and out-of-the-box ideas. With OOH, you can extend beyond the given space and engage viewers with all of their senses. In a post-pandemic world, people are so much more appreciative of being outdoors, so there’s increased receptivity to innovative messaging, especially when it's contextually relevant or interactive.

Memorable creative plus strategic placement equals success

OOH is visual storytelling. Viewers should feel moved, intrigued, joyous, or numerous other emotions when the medium is executed correctly.

At Known we’ve executed an array of campaigns, including for Just Egg that engaged viewers through smart positioning and boundary-pushing messaging. For Valentine's Day we secured a unit outside a Manhattan hotel that said "Do not disturb. Plant-based lovers do it better" on an image of an oversized door hanger. Below, it had a call to action to learn more on their website. On the site, individuals could learn more about sexual health and veganism.

In another instance with JUST Egg, we blanketed the DC market surrounding Earth Day to troll Congress members about the environmental crisis. Using strategically placed units, QR codes featuring Ted Cruz's face, and daring copy we created discussion on- and offline.

OOH is tangible, therefore powerful

This channel is the only advertising medium that is true real estate. With that comes power. 46% of people trust an OOH ad, compared with the average digital channel. Trust is huge in the world of advertising. Creating credibility for a brand, especially a new one, can increase site visits, store visits, and overall purchase consideration.

Where does this trust come from? OOH is real and tangible. It can blend into a community seamlessly and can even be considered art. For example, hand-painted murals can be done so well that the average viewer does not even realize it is advertising, creating a long-lasting memory of the brand or message.

Measurement and attribution are continuing to advance

One reason advertisers shy away from OOH is because they think they can’t measure its impact. But Geopath, the official billboard ratings bureau of the US, is continuing to take strides in their measurement. They use anonymous mobile location data and audience insights to provide insights on each unique characteristic of every OOH location they measure.

Further, the ability to tap into mobile location data has opened countless doors for measurement and attribution of OOH. Not only can we perform brand studies to determine awareness and brand favorability, but there are so many other studies that can be activated. Foot traffic, web or app visitation, and even sales lift can be traced back to an OOH campaign. For example, according to DISQO, exposure to OOH resulted in a 8% lift in aided brand awareness for Just Egg.

OOH is unique and a necessary part of the media mix

OOH is not designed to compete with what a brand is doing digitally. OOH is a different channel with different goals. It is important to remember the channel’s purpose and what it is capable of. Trying to force OOH into the same box as an online channel will never work. When OOH is used correctly, it can generate awareness, drive traffic, elevate brand perception, create buzz and brand recognition, conquer competitors, and connect with a local community. The potential with OOH is limitless and unlike any other channel.

For more on OOH's past present and future, check out our Deep Dive hub.
Brand Strategy Out-of-home Media

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Known is a modern marketing company that pairs Ph.D. data scientists with award-winning creatives, expert research teams and strategists who leverage machine learning,...

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