1. As we close out 2021, what excites you most about OOH right now?
We have all the components needed to drive real value for brand marketers, and for our industry to capture advertising dollars that are shifting in a changing media landscape. The use of 1st-party data, at both the brand and agency level, is accelerating; advanced measurement solutions can tie exposure to metrics previously isolated to online campaigns (such as web conversions); and the marketplace has achieved true global scale, with every major global signage network participating. And brands are taking notice! The return to spend has exceeded our expectations and we’re seeing marketers expand their investments.
I’m also excited to see that many media owners are investing in their technology in order to better take advantage of that demand. You can’t capture ad dollars if your technical integrations aren’t working properly. Media owners are evaluating everything from their hardware to ad serving systems to content platforms, and making investments that will unlock revenue and enable them to build the next wave of unique digital signage experiences.
2. What do you believe are the key ingredients that will fuel the industry’s next phase of growth?
Adoption of programmatic in OOH is now widespread, but with so many platforms and new offerings in the space we run the risk of getting too focused on minute optimizations vs. driving true value for a brand advertiser. Focusing on ROI and building out measurement solutions for every KPI, every industry and every type of marketing campaign will be key for the next phase of growth.
We need to prove to any category of brand CMO that if they invest $1 in OOH, they will get back $4+ in sales. There already are strong solutions for CPG, automotive, brick-and-mortar retail and tourism to tie exposure to sales and visitation; emerging solutions connecting KPIs that are widely accepted in other media channels and continuing to go deep into advertiser vertical measurement will fuel the next wave of buyer investment.
3. What trends do you predict we’ll see more of in out of home in 2022 and beyond?
While billboards and large format media remain at the core of OOH, I expect we’ll continue to see more and more consumer-experience driven signage networks enter the market. Thanks to increasing consumer comfort with and demand for self-service experiences, the OOH landscape is expanding with service-first signage. It helps that these networks can efficiently scale a revenue business through programmatic, and the creative experiences they build provide attractive contexts for brands to reach their audiences.
I think we’ll also see media owners take a much closer look at how they manage revenue across all business lines and increasing focus on tools to maximize yield. As programmatic has grown to represent significant contributions to a network’s bottom line, media owners are moving away from managing revenue in siloes. Growing the % of transactions that are biddable, increasing bid density and tighter yield optimization will all be areas of focus in 2022.