The latest research by Posterscope into South Africa’s out of home landscape reveals a media sector that is thriving as it evolves.
This year marks my sixth year at Posterscope and within the OOH industry. I can’t help but feel a sense of real pride at how much has changed not only within the our business, but also how the OOH industry and landscape has evolved, and how exciting it has been to be part of this change. I couldn’t have joined the industry at a more pivotal time.
Key themes driving this evolution are;
- The rapid growth of digital OOH
- The dynamic creative capabilities of digital OOH
- The introduction of true OOH measurement by the OMC
- The amplification of location marketing intelligence services, driven by the explosion of location data
- Mobile OOH
Although we are in the midst of some very exciting changes and developments in OOH, it’s important not to lose ourselves completely in the razzle-dazzle of these new developments. Before riding the location data wave, let’s acknowledge the stabilising factors within the industry and the growth achieved from the solid base of the fundamentals of OOH.
Looking back to August 2017, we have seen an increase in the number of billboards from 12 800 sites to 13 300 sites in March 2019, a 3.7% increase. It’s fantastic to see some strong growth in the Western Cape with the number of sites increasing by 4.7% from 2018 to 2019 (Source: Outdoor Auditors, State of OOH Report, March 2018 & 2019).
Occupancy of sites is also something that needs to be considered and how this impacts on spend across the industry. When comparing the occupancy rates provided in the latest State of OOH Report, March 2019 (Source: Outdoor Auditors) in relation to Nielsen OOH spend (keeping in mind that not all media owners report figures to Nielsen for OOH so these figures are a guide) we see some trends starting to emerge and the correlation between peaks and dips in occupancy vs. OOH spend.
Over the past six years we have seen the highest spend, according to Nielsen, in January 2016 at R118 814 614.17, with 27% blank sites. In February 2019, the market is lifting nicely compared to February 2017 and 2018 with OOH spend at R104 023 592.00 with only 25% blank sites, which is the lowest number of blank sites since January 2015.
The growth in the industry is significant and this has paved the way and guided some of the more significant developments to the growth of digital OOH, which for Posterscope has meant the introduction and implementation of dynamic advertising in South Africa, through Liveposter.
The implementation of this technology in digital OOH means that the local industry is now able to execute digital OOH in the same way that global markets have been able to for some time now, and it is starting to see the same types of results for clients on these campaigns.
We are delivering global OOH best practice locally and it is an exceptional transition to be a part of.
Liveposter’s digital development director, Adam Cherry recently published an article titled ‘How advertisers can get dynamic with digital OOH‘ referencing some of the benefits of dynamic advertising;
“This trend will only continue as more advertisers recognise the benefits that dynamic can add to their OOH campaigns such as:
- Dynamic allows a brand to speak to its audience in the way that they want, providing consumers with more reactive and relevant content. OOH has traditionally been known as a broadcast medium that enables a brand to tell a story, but with dynamic the story or message can be tailored to the moment, the location and the context.
- Dynamic increases the performance of OOH campaigns. People are subjected to a staggering 10 000 brand messages a day across all media channels. One way to cut through this clutter and be more memorable is to ensure that your brand message is as relevant as possible, and we know through proprietary research that over 50% of people expect DOOH advertising to be more relevant to them. Furthermore, campaign research across 12 separate campaigns delivered by Posterscope, demonstrates that making an ad message more relevant increases message memorability by over 40%. Sales increased too. When Pimm’s created a live feed using wi-fi footfall trackers in nearby pub gardens to show post work commuters where to quench their thirst on a hot summer’s evening, it created a strong affinity with the summer and saw sales increase by 13%. A direct result of using localised OOH media and dynamic copy.
- A centralised ad serving platform allows brands to react to situations in real-time. During the World Cup, Heinz featured topical content reacting to specific tournament moments. For example, the creative messaging ‘Swe – Done’ went live within 30 minutes of England winning the quarter final.”
I wouldn’t be able to conclude this piece without mentioning my favourite child, location data (and yes parents, I know I’m not supposed to play favourites, and I love all my data babies equally, but there is one I love just a little bit more).
It’s hard to read any industry article these days without the terms ‘data’, ‘location data’, ‘data explosion’ or the infamous ‘big data’ being referenced and this article will be no different.
It’s simply impossible to ignore the current state of where our industry is and where we are going without acknowledging what data and technology has done to cement the path to the future of OOH.
Growth in social data, mobile data and merging online and offline behaviours has meant growth in consumer data, and as consumer data is becoming more available we are able to use tools and location data to better understand where people are and what they are doing in these places.
We can use this rich consumer understanding to shape and inform our approach to OOH like never before.
The future of OOH is bright!
Livia Brown is the general manager for Posterscope Cape Town. She has been with the company since 2013. Brown plays a crucial role in taking the lead and driving innovation, tools and new business for the Posterscope Cape Town office.
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