The perfect pairing – social media and digital out of home

Out of home (OOH) media is prominent, noticeable and difficult to ignore, traditionally audience engagement with OOH was a challenge that required highly innovative creative to overcome. The introduction of digital out of home (DOOH) and explosion of the access to smart phones has changed all of that – opening up a world of opportunity for creative execution and seamless integration with social media campaigns, as well as real-time audience engagement.

Social media’s strong point is engagement and two-way communication, but it is easy to ignore and many digital adverts are simply not seen. Integrating social media campaigns with DOOH boosts visibility and reach. In this way, social media and DOOH are the perfect pairing.

Social media allows the audience to interact with an OOH campaign, with DOOH they can become part of it, their message can be shown on the billboard, as can a photograph or video they share on social media, through innovative technological integration.

DOOH increases visibility and mass reach of digital campaigns

Google has estimated that about 56% of digital ads are never seen and considering that 61.5% of all web traffic is non-human (bots), the chance of having a non-visible digital ad is quite significant. According to a Posterscope US study (2013), adding billboards to a social media campaign can increase reach by up to 203%, while adding billboards to a mobile app and web campaign can increase reach by as much as 303%.

 “Out-of-home advertising and mobile are natural partners, and allow brands to forge a greater connection with their customers,” states and article on Outfront Media. DOOH can connect to social media platforms or harness mobile technologies like near field communication (NFC), augmented reality (AR), QR codes, beacons, or visual search to drive sales and increase brand awareness.

Amp up social media engagement through DOOH

Becky Saunders, Social Media Executive at Ultimate Asset  says, “When I see an advert that makes me laugh, catches my eye or just looks pretty cool, I share it on social media and I know I’m not the only one.” She explains that pictures work well on social and this integrates perfectly with DOOH which is visually based medium. Innovative OOH campaigns make great shareable content for the web.

“To reach the connected consumer, OOH is effective as a gateway through which to drive deeper engagement with a call to action. The mobile phone is the default tool with which to answer this call,” said Daniel Steyn, OOH communications specialist at Posterscope, in an article on The Media Online.

Steyn speaks about the challenge of attracting and retaining a consumer’s attention when they are out and about in environments with multiple distractions. He says that a key concession to this is that public spaces such a public transport hubs, airports and shopping centres offer increased dwell time. It is a key opportunity to integrate mobile technology and social media where consumer’s default action if to reach for their phone.

“The OOH ecosystem that has developed around the connected consumer and their daily journey provides a multitude of opportunities to target audiences based on their location, time of day, state of mind, and current activity. The ability to communicate in real-time through networked digital screens, Wi-Fi and mobile broadband to deliver contextually relevant messaging that drives more immediate consideration, trial and purchase is a compelling reason for brands to invest in the success of their OOH,” says Steyn.

Kenneth Brinkmann, senior vice president of digital at out-of-home advertising agency Posterscope USA, says in his article on Adweek, that social media makes true engagement with DOOH possible, “by serving as an engagement funnel for location marketing and helping to amplify campaigns.”

DOOH can seed a social campaign offline

“A recent Nielsen study found that approximately 17 percent of digital billboard viewers visit an advertiser’s website or search online within a month of seeing its message,” says John Stevens, business consultant and marketer, in his article on Adweek, “OOH offers huge value to local brands, given the medium’s location-specific nature and all-around effectiveness.” Brinkmann states that DOOH can seed social media campaigns offline.

Social media content strategy informed by DOOH

Brinkmann explains how DOOH can inform social content strategy, particularly one that is created for mobile. Human attention spans have decreased (to less than that of  a goldfish) since the inception of social and digital media, OOH and DOOH strategy has always aimed at getting maximum brand exposure in the minimum amount of time and social media content strategists can apply these same principles.

DOOH is location based and is perfectly suited to hyperlocal content, it can inform social media content strategy through user generated content. Brinkmann says, “For social media specialists, location marketing is the next frontier – an opportunity to bring concepts, ideas and trends into the real world and create genuine interaction with your audience while driving earned media and, what everyone is after, measurable and impactful returns on the marketing investment.”

Measurement makes perfect

Effectiveness and ROI measurement become much more effective when you combine mobile and DOOH. This can be through location based mobile research, location based effectiveness surveys, foot traffic studies and cross channel attribution. According to Flowics, crossing information from social analytics tools and these variables will provide some interesting insights to analyse the performance of a social DOOH campaign.

Source: Adcomm Media.

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