The Outdoor Advertising Association of America (OAAA) has announced the finalists for the 2016 OBIE Awards.
Now in its 74th year, the OBIE Awards recognise creative excellence in the out of home (OOH) medium. (‘OBIE’ is a reference to the Egyptian obelisk, thought by some historians to be the first form of advertising). According to Primedia Outdoor’s marketing and marketing sales executive, Terry Murphy, “the OBIEs celebrate some of the world’s best outdoor campaigns. They both inspire and set a standard for future campaigns conducted using out of home advertising”.
Nurlan Urazbaev, editor in chief of Digital Signage Pulse, notes that the 108 nominated campaigns ‘demonstrate the myriad of ways that simplicity can be captured and expressed through the OOH medium’, singling out McDonalds’ ‘Endless Refreshment’ campaign as an example. This shows the fast food brand’s red and yellow straw, emblazoned as an infinity sign against their characteristic red background.
Another contender noted by Urazbaev is Apple’s “shot on iPhone 6” campaign, which selected 162 photographs taken by the global public using the iPhone 6. These were used on more than 10 000 billboards across 25 countries to make “the largest mobile photo gallery in history”.
Along with the beauty and simplicity demonstrated by the finalists, Urazbaev points out the increasing integration of OOH and digital technology, which allows for “greater opportunities to personalise interactions with consumers”.
“Marcolin’s GUESS Eyewear engaged consumers in a unique, interactive way using custom iPad additions at mall kiosks that enabled consumers to take a selfie and try on sunglasses while viewing the ad,” he writes.
Yet another finalist, JetBlue “created an interactive trivia game hosted within a custom built fuselage. Mall shoppers were challenged to select the correct city from a multiple choice list corresponding with the aerial view to win a roundtrip ticket sweepstakes.”
This trend – the increasing integration of OOH with digital technology – is likewise on the rise locally. “The ability of digital technology to galvanise out of home’s inherent strengths is driving a real renaissance in OOH”, says Murphy.
The 2016 winners of the OBIE Awards will be announced at a gala event on April 19, as part of the TAB/OAAA Out of Home Media Conference & Expo in Boca Raton, FL. Also set to be awarded is the OBIE Hall of Fame Award, established in 1992 to “reward brands that have exemplified long-standing distinction in using the OOH medium”.
Click here to view the full list of finalists for the 2016 OBIE awards.
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