[Trends 2020] Here’s What Will Redefine Outdoor Advertising


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Out-of-home (OOH) advertising is one of the oldest forms of advertising. Today it stands at the stage of evolution owing to the proliferation of technology, changing consumption patterns and increasing incidence of the organized retail sector.

A recent KPMG report has highlighted that OOH advertising has witnessed close to 11 per cent compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) over the past five years, expanding from INR 2,000 crore in FY14 to INR 3,400 crore in FY19. The OOH sector is expected to witness continuity in the growth trend in 2020. Here are the top trends that will redefine outdoor advertising in 2020.

Digital Outdoor Advertising

Like other industries, the OOH sector too is disrupted by the wave of digital transformation. The advantages of digital out-of-home (DOOH) media are manifold—brighter colours, movement and convenience. Its major advantage is the ability to run different advertisements—or even multiple images for a single advertisement—onto a system at once. It can then cycle through them at a frequency desired by the owner. Due to data used in the out-of-home space being anonymized, DOOH is being used as a safer alternative for reaching out to the target audience, with impressive, exciting visual advertisements. According to the KPMG report, digital OOH contributed to nearly 30 per cent of OOH revenues globally, with India contributing to 3 per cent of total revenue. These statistics are a testimony to the immense potential of this sector.

Greater Emphasis on Storytelling

Brands are increasingly relying on riveting stories to engage consumers, a trend which will be witnessed in 2020 as well. Below the line, OOH activities such as product sampling, events/activations and lounge tie-ups are already gaining popularity. Going forward, creativity and managing micro-moment-based storytelling in 10 and 5-second duration will be instrumental in enabling brands to gain a competitive edge over others. Creative out-of-the-box ideas centred on innovation, engagement and experience will be given due recognition.

Ample Options to Advertise

The leveraging of the latest innovations in technology has widened the scope of placements of OOH advertisements especially digital advertisements. Airports, waiting sheds, public transport (buses, taxis, trains), blank walls have emerged as strong contenders to traditional billboard advertising. The KPMG report has pointed out that airport advertising is among the significant contributors to OOH growth in 2019 commanding 27 per cent revenue share which is likely to continue in 2020 as well.

Smarter Advertisements

2020 will witness the increasing number of smart outdoor advertisements. These advertisements will not only show information about a particular business, product or service, but will also relay the demographic profile of those who interacted with it. Sensors, facial recognition software among other smart features will enable outdoor billboards to interact with their target audience. The use of emerging technologies such as augmented reality and virtual reality will make OOH campaigns more engaging.

Mobile Advertising Complementing OOH

Innovations in both outdoor advertising and mobile technology are enabling the audience to interact and share data leading to customized experiences. The integration of outdoor advertisements with consumer’s mobile phone display or connecting with the device’s audio is among the trends to witness an upswing in 2020. Beacons will play a significant part in such integration for the target audience.

Omni-Channel Integration

Another trend which 2020 is likely to witness is the ability of OOH advertising to seamlessly integrate with digital, social and television. OOH advertising is poised to fuel the growth of other mediums through motion capability in DOOH and scalable content opportunities. Not only it is efficient but is also instrumental in ensuring consistency in key message of the brand across all mediums.

Technology Scalability

The all-pervasive impact of technology will be experienced in OOH sector too. This will pave the way for open collaboration, smart use of location data and ad exchange developments. Scalability, trust and accountability will be the driving forces for this trend.

Data-driven Approach

If 2019 was about identifying data sources, 2020 will be about redefining those processes in data-led planning and demonstrating tangible outcomes. What data we are using, why we are using it, and how we are using it, will be the key for brands to make an impact. For example, OOH ads can be equipped with Bluetooth beacons to relay information of the audience that interacted with them. Advertisers would then tweak the ad to tailor according to the demographic profile of the audience in a particular location. This will increase the chances of an OOH ad to be noticed and viewed by a targeted audience. Data will be used in multifarious ways to improve campaign targeting, optimization and attribution as well as delivering a more contextually relevant message to consumers.

Greater Personalization

In line with the changing preferences of consumers coupled with greater demand for customization, brands will need to be more agile in expanding their reach via OOH as well as exploring content partnerships in digital OOH. Customer experience and customer-centricity will be the key to brand building.

No Room for Hollow Promises

Due to increasing awareness and policy regulations, the new-age consumer can see the bigger picture of the brands: supply chains, ingredient provenance, employee work conditions and political affiliations. This implies that advertisers can no longer get away with spurious claims and empty promises. Purpose-led advertising will rule the roost. Advertisers will have to adapt themselves to align with modern consumer expectations while being authentic and genuine to get noticed in the clutter and achieve their desired objectives.

Hence building a value proposition will be the key factor for brands to maximize their impact. Brands will have to be mindful that OOH can have a considerable impact as opposed to other forms of advertising due to twin advantages of size benefit and mass outreach.

Source: Atul Shrivastava


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