When interviewing at Intersection years ago, I can still remember why I considered moving out of publishing and into the OOH space. Working at a magazine, each month I would flip the pages and see our clients’ ads, pages the team had worked on, and then my name on the masthead — it made me feel like a million bucks and it never got old. I couldn’t imagine a moment that would be bigger than that — until I thought of the creative landscape OOH offers in real life, in the center of America’s greatest cities.

OOH has always been synonymous with brand awareness and buzz (yet, we all know it is so much more than that). The many brand awareness strengths of OOH will always hold firm and will never get old to the person lucky enough to see their brand, face, or partner featured, life-size, splashed across cities in the real world. There are several reasons why OOH can boost awareness for brands in ways that are unique to this channel:

  • OOH is a showstopper: Celebrities see their faces plastered everywhere across traditional print and digital media, but even the biggest star cannot resist reacting and posting pictures of their OOH campaign to their social media channels, further driving organic promotion and buzz. Over the past few months alone, we’ve seen the likes of Kim Kardashian post OOH creative for her SKKN BY KIM skincare line and influencers like Remi Bader, Olivia Rodrigo, and Emma Chamberlain tout their OOH ads in a “Hey, look Ma, I made it” moment. It’s not only Hollywood that hits the share button, OOH has proven to be the advertising medium most often posted to social media.
  • OOH as a proxy for storefronts: Urban storefronts historically have served a dual purpose, to transact with customers and serve as a visual reminder of your brand’s existence to consumers in neighborhoods where you know your customers live. Without a storefront, you can move all of your commerce online, but the power of that unblockable, unskippable, visual reminder of your brand has to be made up for in some other way, and that’s one way that OOH advertising comes into play. You might not be able to advertise a sale or a product launch in your store window, but you can do it on targeted OOH screens.
  • Visual reminder throughout the consumer journey: As more purchasing decisions are impacted by inflation, we’re seeing consumers say they are wary of impulse spending. 72% are spending less due to recent inflation, significantly cutting out “fun” or “impulse buys,” according to the new Q1 2022 Consumer Trends Report from JungleScout. Brands cannot be passive and rely on consumers to just “go for it” on their own. OOH provides an unmatched opportunity for brand awareness, to remind shoppers near the point of purchase.
  • Broad reach, without the “fast-forward” button: In modern history, the most common way for brands to build mass reach has been with television. However, as technology improves, consumers are finding ways to circumvent ads. From DVR to VOD to ad-free streaming services, the television marketplace is becoming more and more fragmented. OOH can build similar reach numbers among consumers in key markets, and the best part is— they can’t skip your ad.

OOH can do a lot for brands that other forms of advertising cannot. It’s exciting to see the evolution of our space as we bring OOH closer to parity with digital channels. While measurement, attribution, and technology will be key factors in the years to come, it’s important not to lose sight of the foundational benefits of the channel. OOH can build awareness for brands both large and small, and leave a lasting impression with the audiences that matter most.

(2022, September 9). Esther Rapahel. Retrieved from https://www.digitalsignagetoday.com/blogs/ooh-powerful-tool-for-brand-awareness/