Outdoor vs. Digital

aaeaaqaaaaaaaaioaaaajdaznthkzdvhltbhm2qtngq4ni05mmq1lwzhmjvlymi4zmqzngA while back, I was driving in L.A. when the blackout ruling fell upon the digital outdoor billboard displays in West L.A.

http://articles.latimes.com/2013/apr/12/local/la-me-adv-digital-billboards-20130413

At the time, I wondered if this was going to impact digital billboards across the nation. And what about outdoor media companies – what was their fate?

Fast forward to today, and we see how digital marketing has progressed. Tracking down people with re-marketing efforts, precision marketing techniques – one might wonder whether the billboard or other media is still a profitable business.

From my vantage point – I only see outdoor media playing an even more critical role. Companies like Van Wagner are going to be more important to marketing budgets – because now, it is even harder to capture the attention of our prospects. They delete their emails without reading them, they are inundated with tweets that gush like a Class V river, and they skip-ahead on TV commercials.

In today’s world, it is extremely difficult to get the attention of our prospects – no matter how good our creative, or messaging, and how relevant we may think we are.

When and where else can we get in front of our prospects? The answer is outdoor. I might be more biased living in an urban town like NYC, but here are the stats:

  • Over 150,000 Billboards
  • Over 200,000 Buses
  • Over 30,000 Shopping Malls
  • Over 45,000 Taxis

Source: Outdoor Advertising Association of America

Now, I am not saying that OOH or specifically outdoor media is the solution to reaching a prospect. Just as any marketing mix strategy would have multiple channels – OOH is a channel. Digital will continue to play a very key role to engage prospects and bring them through the funnel. But at the same time, having a digital only strategy is leaving money on the table.

I am curious what others who do out of home think about outdoor and digital marketing… is it getting easier to measure out of home media? Are you finding it effective? Are digital marketing budgets having an impact on OOH?

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