Digital out-of-home is set to be the world’s fastest growing media channel with great things predicted for the sector in 2017. As technology becomes more affordable and the price of hiring a digital billboard becomes more cost-effective, businesses now have unprecedented access to the benefits of DOOH.
And one of the biggest trends predicted for the OOH industry this year is data-driven advertising.
“New capabilities in how we collect, process and analyze data will allow us to understand, segment and target OOH audiences with a lot more precision,” Nancy Fletcher, president of the OAAA, told attendees at the 2016 TAB/OAAA Conference last April.
Equipped with this data, advertisers are able to “engage consumers with more relevant messages and measure OOH’s return on investment like never before.”
The move towards data-led advertising is a trend that lends itself particularly well to DOOH. It’s a flexible medium that can respond quickly to data insights, produce real-time updates and easily incorporate fresh technology to deliver hyper-targeted, personalized and relevant messages.
So how are DOOH advertisers using data to boost consumer engagement?
Fine-tuned demographic data
Data has always played a large part in outdoor advertising, and indeed, marketing in general. Demographic information has long been used to determine which locations see the most Footfall and which target audiences are likely to frequent particular locations.
In the past, OOH advertising has been notoriously difficult to target accurately in comparison to other channels like digital marketing or TV advertising. However, recent developments in technology as well as interconnectivity with other mediums mean that DOOH advertisers are able to fine-tune their targeting with even more detailed demographic data.
Last year, Clear Channel Outdoor America launched RADAR in 11 busy metropolitan sites. This new marketing platform tracks compliant consumer’s mobile data to target people based on their digital movements. Using an algorithm to analyze people’s movements, RADAR enables advertisers to gain an understanding of consumer behavior in the real world.
For example, RADAR can use a device’s GPS location to track whether a mobile-user visited a specific shop or restaurant. It then aggregates data from consumers with shared behaviors to analyze their daily movement patterns. In doing so, it creates a detailed picture of which audiences will be passing a Clear Channel billboard and at which time. Thus, advertisers are able to target future ads, as well as track which consumers have seen their current ads. It’s an efficient use of data.
Using data to identify and connect
Data-led DOOH advertising goes beyond efficiency and marketing targets. When coupled with the creativity opportunities and real-time flexibility that digital signage offers, data-led OOH produces unique and memorable consumer experiences.
UK-based insurance company, Churchill recently used Ocean’s vehicle recognition technology to monitor passing vehicles, and display appropriate messages on a billboard in their “Churchies drive thru car insurance” campaign. For example, as a silver Volvo pulls-up alongside the ad, the billboard message reads “Silver Volvo, loving your automatic brakes. So get 20% off our insurance with AEB”.
Data identifies specific groups of people and enables advertisers to deepen their engagement. It’s a great way to grab the attention of consumers and to present them with a tailored message that is relevant to their particular needs.
Can Data-led DOOH be too personal?
Using data-centric OOH walks a fine line between efficiently engaging consumers with a relevant message and being downright creepy. Collecting data from your mobile phone, tracking your movements, and tracing your online purchases… it’s all starting to sound a tad Orwellian. People don’t like being spied on.
But pulling-off an effective data-led OOH campaign doesn’t need to be creepy. Spotify used humor in their new global OOH campaign to call-out its users on some of their more questionable listening habits of 2016.
The ads used Spotify’s 2016 listener data to generate playful headlines like:
– “Dear person who played ‘Sorry’ 42 times on Valentine’s Day, what did you do?”
– “Dear 3,749 people who streamed ‘It’s the End of the World as We Know It’ the day of the Brexit vote, hang in there”
– “To the person in NoLlta who started listening to holiday music way back in June, You really jingle all the way, huh?”
And whilst some of these ads use personal data as well as aggregate data, consumers don’t feel like their privacy has been compromised. The response to the campaign was overwhelmingly positive, and if anything, consumers have appreciated Spotify’s transparency about their data gathering.
There’s a fine line between communicating with consumers efficiently and invading their sense of privacy. But when it’s done well, data-led DOOH has the power to connect with consumers in a way that far exceeds other forms of advertising.
Data gathering has long been used to great effect by other marketing mediums, and now, many are heralding 2017 as the year of OOH. With greater access to data-centric planning alongside the connectivity of digital signage, 2017 is set to be an exciting time for the world of DOOH.