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Surprise-- Outdoor Advertising Isn't Dead



Discourses on Local Outdoor Advertising


We get it. It’s 2022. We live in a world where smartphones and the Internet dominate our entire lives. Digital advertising mediums like PPC, paid social & programmatic provide brands a presumed magic bullet to gain new customers for cheap and track ROI with 100% accuracy. Who has the need for relics out of the past, like out-of-home advertising?

Hold your horses. In the words of the great Humpty Hump, stop what you’re doing, ‘cause we’re about to ruin the image & style that you’re used to.


Did you know close to every single brand out there is relying on digital advertising to move the needle for them, making it more of a cluttered and expensive environment for brands than it’s made out to be? What if we told you technological changes have restricted the ability for brands to track ROI from digital advertising, like we previously covered? The small screen might hold dominion over all of our lives, but that doesn’t mean it’s always the best avenue for advertisers. Believe it or not, the real world still exists. People have to drive places to get from point A to point B. Teleportation hasn’t been invented (yet). Basically, what we’re saying is that local outdoor advertising is NOT dead, and pity the fool who says so.


Don’t Sleep on Local Outdoor Advertising


Although digital media captures the majority of our collective attention day in and day out, think about how convoluted is has become. Social media platforms and websites are inundated with ads. The ads take up a small portion of your already small phone or computer screen. They may capture your attention for a second or two, but most likely, you’ll keep scrolling and go on your way. Video ads on platforms like YouTube are increasingly seen as intrusive and are met with annoyance by the user, who are more likely to skip rather than watch the ad to completion. While digital ads have their time and place within the media plans of brands and advertisers, they are not the magic solution they are oftentimes made out to be.


With outdoor advertising, you get impact exclusivity. Although the medium carries a higher overall cost than digital, you get what you pay for. For starters, you can’t ignore or skip a billboard on the side of the road like you can on digital. The massive physical presence of these boards almost demand the attention of those driving or walking by. In addition, you won’t have to compete with other brands for the attention of users like you do on digital, where thousands of advertisers are competing for the same ad slot. With static outdoor boards, you have sole ownership of that space over the course of the contract. Even on digital boards, you’re only sharing the space with a handful of brands, and you still get the impact of being on a physical board for everyone who drives by.


Brands who advertise on billboards also benefit from perceived luxury. Users know at this point that it’s easier for brands to advertise on digital. It’s not “special” to serve someone an ad on the Facebook news feed, or on YouTube, or on Google search. Conversely, brands who advertise on out-of-home achieve a sort of grandeur in the eyes of users. They may subconsciously take the brand more seriously or give them more attention than they would otherwise. This allows local brands to create more long-term brand equity in their local communities compared to local brands who rely on digital advertising and get lost in the shuffle.


Combining Local Outdoor & Digital Media


¿Por que no los dos? We don’t want to downplay the impact or effectiveness of digital media. In fact, we’ve covered extensively in the past the virtues of digital media. Our intention today is to get the record straight that local out-of-home advertising is still a force to be reckoned with.


In fact, the ideal scenario is combining the two mediums within a strategic media plan. OOH advertising drives mass-awareness like no other. Digital media is great for capturing users who are showing intent and encouraging them to complete an action, either on your website or in-store. Why not use both mediums for what they’re great at? One or a few strategically-placed outdoor boards is likely to result in a spike in search traffic for your brand, and with an integrated strategy between OOH & paid digital, you can capture that traffic with consistent ad messaging and drive users down the funnel. This is just one example of how combining the two mediums can unlock untapped potential for your brand.


Local Outdoor Advertising with The Ward Group


We’re an advertising agency that’s been buying local outdoor for clients since the 1980s. We have the relationships and the expertise to get the most of your OOH media budget, or to put local outdoor advertising to the test for your brand. Contact The Ward Group today and let’s get started!