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News from the 2017 DOOH Upfronts

This year’s Internet Advertising Bureaux Upfronts saw the annual digital media showcase bring together a wide range of brands and participants discussing the possibilities open to advertisers and agencies in a rapidly changing digital landscape.

Speakers addressed a range of topics such as the rise of Digital out of home advertising, the need for industry-wide advertising standards, and changing audience engagement.

news from DOOH 2017 upfronts

JCDecaux and OOH: Outdoor is “the best of both worlds”

Marketing expert Mark Ritson said that Outdoor’s intersection with Digital offered exciting possibilities. and underscored Mark Zuckerberg’s belief that contemporary advertising is about “having a conversation’ with audiences, rather than pushing information towards them. He believes that Digital out-of-home (DOOH) can avoid some of the pitfalls of Digital such as brand safety and that the medium could be “the best of both worlds”.

Other speakers discussed the need to focus on brand building without sacrificing sales activation and the possibilities now that video has been introduced to DOOH. But the big news was JCDecaux’s launch of a new brand charter called “BranDO”. The charter is aimed at shoring up trust in brands and represents a new benchmark in DOOH quality standards. This represents an acknowledgment that the industry is moving towards greater automation and that there is a growing need for consistent values across increasingly integrated advertising networks.

JCDecaux’s Les Binet made the point that the Digital revolution is not replacing other media, it is in fact enhancing it; with “digital support” making OOH 60% more effective.

Binet also argued that “broad reach” is still more effective than targeted campaigns. This is a useful reminder of the impact of out-of-home advertising which is characterised by its wide reach. This is backed up by the spectacular rise of DOOH which has grown by 30% in the past year.

Metrics that matter

A comScore panel talked about the complexities of advertising metrics and how to find “metrics that matter”. This means measuring advertising reach across a range of platforms. This is particularly important because the UK is now a “multi-platform market”. For more on getting to grips with metrics in out-of-home advertising, check out our recent blog post on the topic.

Another big topic was the rise of Mobile. Mobile access to the internet is now at 48% in the UK, but only 38% of digital ad spend is dedicated to it. Not only that, but Mobile use encourages “ephemeral content sharing” via platforms such as Facebook and Instagram. This is part of an ad environment in which audiences are wary of the hard-sell, favouring instead “ambient discovery” where they happen across brand messages in a saturated media environment that’s no longer centred around The News at Ten and Saturday shopping.

Amazon want your ads

Amazon held a closed session in a bid to draw in more of UK ad budgets. They are a “sleeping giant in online media” who are currently in the process of playing catch-up to Google and Facebook. Small businesses may well want to investigate advertising on the platform which is less saturated with ads than the Google/Facebook “duopoly”.