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It’s Time to Venture Outside


Out-of-home advertising took a particularly hard hit in 2020 - with a pandemic and lockdowns all around the world - but analysts and advertisers alike are looking forward to somewhat of a rebound for OOH in 2021. Eventually, people will return to their regularly scheduled activities - going to movies, shopping, dining out, working at the office - and you need to start planning for that future now.


We’re All Tired of Being Stuck Inside


Like kids anxiously counting down the days to summer vacation, we’re all tired of being stuck at home and glued to our digital devices. According to the Out of Home Advertising Association of America (OAAA), 75% of us are burnt out from experiencing excessive time online, causing us to tune out digital device ads. This is 7 points higher than what was reported last September.


But, There May be a Light at the End of the Tunnel


Luckily, there are now several vaccines currently being distributed and moves being made to loosen restrictions and reopen schools. The OAAA found that 72% of respondents surveyed planned to commute to their jobs at least part of the time in the next few months. This is excellent news for OOH advertising!


As you look forward in your media plans and incorporate OOH back into the mix, remember that it won’t be just like it was pre-pandemic.


Increased Value of Second- and Third-Tier Markets


Marketers have consistently targeted big cities like New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco or Chicago for their OOH campaigns. In fact, the OAAA found 55% of consumers who live in big cities (1M+ population) reported noticing more OOH messaging and signage today, compared to 41% of the general population saying the same. However, large metro areas have seen a mass exodus, with people leaving them in record numbers once everything shut down.


For that reason, you should reconsider the value of second- or third-tier markets. These days, you may find that your audience is more likely to be found in these areas where lockdown measures are likely a bit more relaxed, or will be relaxed faster than in big cities.


Improved Ability to Target Audiences


One bright spot for the future of OOH is the increased ease with which we can measure campaign performance and accurately target audiences. We’ve seen a growth in digital OOH advertising and programmatic OOH ad solutions, all helping to bring us better audience-based targeting, location-based targeting and multichannel retargeting options.


If you can implement the right technology, the OOH ecosystem will become a reliable, high-performance marketing channel capable of driving both physical and digital conversions.


New Tech to Aid in Planning


Speaking of technology, automated solutions are emerging everyday to help improve media buying and planning, reducing manual processes and saving us all some time. In 2021, we expect to see the trend of making OOH advertising more efficient continue, which is good news for everyone, brands and agencies alike.


Venture Outside With The Ward Group


OOH is not a monolith. There are a lot of different media placements to choose from including cinema, billboards, transit, sports arenas and stadiums or point-of-purchase, just to name a few. As we get ready to go outside again, it’s tough to decide where you should take your campaigns. That’s why the media stewards are here to help! We’ll help you find the best option for your creative and your audience. To get started, contact The Ward Group today.