The digital age has definitely revolutionized the way we approach marketing, but where does traditional media fit in this new digital landscape. Surprisingly out-of-home media, one of the oldest forms of advertising, has remained an important part of the media mix for Fortune 500 companies all the way down to the mom-and-pop shop around the corner. Out-of-home media has 4 qualities that ensure that it will always have a place in the media budget.
No other medium gives you the opportunity to reach consumers anywhere you can imagine. It started with simple signs and roadside billboards. Now you can place ads on bus stops, shopping carts, the side of a subway car, and almost anywhere else you can imagine. Any time your target is anywhere outside of their house you have an opportunity to reach them. This is a level of versatility that no other advertising media enjoys.
When you run a TV or radio spot you are hoping to reach as many people as you can within the 30 seconds of air time that you have. When you buy an ad on social media you are hoping that it pops-up at the right time for the right audience. Out-of-home allows your message to be available 24/7 giving you so much more reach, which often leads to better brand awareness. You get to make a strong, lasting impression for a fixed fee. This differentiates it from the variable nature of other media where the price is constantly being adjusted based on the number of views.
So much emphasis gets put on being “disruptive” in marketing departments of some of the biggest brands and the ad agencies they work with, but where does that really get you. There are probably only a handful of truly disruptive campaigns that received positive engagement from consumers. The rest have caused them to invest in technology to avoid seeing ads, like DVR’s and ad blockers. Out-of-home media doesn’t interrupt the activity they are already engaged in. They can have a positive interaction with your brand because you have been respectful of their time and didn’t force your brand on them.
One of the negatives many marketers assume is that there is no way to ensure that out-of-home media is reaching a targeted audience. It’s actually quite the opposite when you start looking at strategically placed out-of-home media. When you gain an understanding of your target consumers behavior you can identify the places they frequent and you can buy media in that specific location. This guarantees that you don’t get a bunch of wasted impressions because the majority of people who will be in position to see your ad will fit your target audience.