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Where will OOH take you this year?

“NFC? It’s like teenage sex”, one client told me lately, “everyone is talking about it, but hardly anybody is actually doing it!”

There is no disputing the fact that mobile is in its element right now, and research from the OMC confirms that OOH is the best medium for driving mobile search. Ironically, the world’s oldest advertising medium and its newest are perfect partners, they just need brave brands to combine them in the right way and the results are unlimited. Consumers have now evolved to a more empowered status and advertising is now geared around multi screens and multi devices. However, a strive for context, consistency and relevance are all key.

Last year, after five years of hard work and £19 million of investment, the OOH industry finally launched Route. This is the largest GPS study in the world; it now allows planners to confidently reach out to their perfect target audience in the right place, at the right time, combined with the right choice of other media. Now, we want to embrace new technologies to engage with them in the right way. As we enter Route’s second year, the stage is now set for Act 2 where the industry has the opportunity to bring data to life. That is to meet the challenge of the fundamental question and actually change planning and trading practices to more accurately reflect our quantified understanding of how Out of Home reaches audiences. It is never easy to change established practice and process, but we need to do that before we can applaud ourselves.

Today’s consumer is constantly connected and as well as wanting more personalisation, is used to instant gratification and increasing involvement and control of the media they consume.  We no longer simply watch TV; we control it, from bypassing the ads and pausing it to fit in with our lives, to determining the outcome of the show through social media and mobile voting. And OOH is no different. Today, OOH can be whatever you want it to be; a 48 sheet is no longer confined by its frame; it is the gateway to an experience – from instantly watching that exclusive film trailer or downloading that book’s first chapter to entering that amazing competition or purchasing that must-have product with the single tap of a button.

Recently, Vizeum placed Innocent on Primesight’s Waterloo Domination. By utilising the sponsored wifi, this brought the enormous 21 panel analogue site in to the digital world. This instantly transformed the panels from simple billboards to virtual gateways, guiding the consumer to the brand’s great content, literally transporting them in to Innocent’s world and continuing the user journey. This clever use of connectivity turned a campaign which spoke at 150,000 people a day, in to a campaign that could speak with them, one to one.

On a client visit last week, I took a toy company to see their digital advert in cinema foyers. We arrived to find an ecstatic five year-old-boy desperately tapping the digital advert to try and engage with it, but alas, it was not interactive. A screen is second nature to his generation; he is drawn to it and craves to be taken on a journey. OOH is what you want it to be, it can take you anywhere, we just need brave brands to make it happen and the rewards will be unlimited.

Jessica Baldwin is an Account Manager at Primesight

If you’re a media owner and you’d like to contribute to the Vizeum blog then please contact Josh Colley (josh.colley@vizeum.com)  for further details

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