Digital Out of Home (DOOH) Advertising Trends to Watch

DOOH-Digital Out of Home

Advertisers typically prioritize online advertising to reach target audiences on their own devices. Consumers spend so much time browsing the web where there are ample touchpoints between brands and consumers, paving the way for digital ad formats like display advertising to proliferate. However, another format continues to stand the test of time: out of home (OOH) advertising.

What is OOH advertising?

OOH advertising is any advertising that is experienced outside of one’s home, such as billboards, wallscapes and other physical displays. Out of home media have historically been stagnant images, suitable for a single ad with limited messaging opportunity. That led media buyers to search for a way to combine the massive presence and visibility that OOH ads offer with the flexibility and versatility of digital media. As technology advanced throughout the twentieth century, digital displays began to be used for OOH ads – and digital out of home advertising was born.

What is digital OOH advertising?

Digital out of home (DOOH) advertising is OOH advertising that utilizes digital technology to display ads. The core benefit of DOOH advertising is the use of a digital screen, as it simplifies the process of publishing an OOH ad and allows for more creative media. Because this type of outdoor advertising utilizes digital media and can easily contain multiple, rotating ads in the same placement, it’s also more cost effective than traditional OOH.

DOOH formats

There are three primary formats for DOOH media:

Large format ads are large-scale digital displays, such as digital billboards or bus shelters. Times Square is a perfect visual example of large format DOOH. 

Location-based, or place-based, includes the signage consumers might see in the places where they shop and spend their time, like malls, gas stations and restaurants. Because these DOOH ads are location-based, they can also be contextually relevant, making them more effective at engaging consumers who are already in a purchasing mindset. 

Point-of-purchase ads are digital signs that can be seen close to cashiers or checkout kiosks in retail stores. The advantage of this placement is similar to location-based DOOH, reaching target audiences in a purchasing mindset. Advertisers who may have products within a store could use point-of-purchase DOOH ads as a last-second effort to sway their audience in real time into making a purchase.

DOOH trends to watch

DOOH advertising is a rapidly expanding media format, bolstered by the ongoing growth of programmatic media buying. Media buyers are looking for new ways to utilize innovations in digital technology that are taking DOOH media to the next level. 

Virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and facial recognition software are all potential impactors of DOOH as consumers continue to connect more directly to their technology-enabled environment. The rise of 5G, cloud computing and the Internet of Things (IoT) enables this, with the IoT leading to massive amounts of data that indicate a consumer’s interests becoming available. Digital displays also continue to improve in their quality and quantity – it’s no longer major cities that monopolize digitally-savvy storefronts with self-checkout kiosks. 

On top of technical innovations, the lockdowns of the COVID-19 pandemic continue to wane as consumers return in droves to shared spaces – visibility is highly unlikely to be lost in the OOH sector much longer due to the pandemic. 

With all of these factors in mind, some DOOH trends that advertisers can take advantage of include increasing research for and use of interactive media, VR/AR-integrated media and point-of-purchase media. If you’re considering DOOH campaigns among your media strategy, consider looking into these new ways of reaching your target audiences out of their homes. 

FAQs about DOOH advertising

What does DOOH stand for?

DOOH stands for digital out of home, the type of outdoor advertising that uses digital displays in public locations.

What are DOOH ads?

DOOH ads are any ads that are published in digital out of home placements, such as digital billboards. This digital outdoor advertising involves digital images or videos that can be viewed somewhere out of the home, such as on the side of buildings, within stores or on public transit.

Why is DOOH important?

DOOH advertising is important because it provides a more enjoyable experience for consumers viewing OOH ads and it allows a more effective format for advertisers. Because digital media can be swapped out by simply changing the file displaying within the placement, it’s also far more cost effective and avoids advertising fatigue.

How do I buy DOOH ads?

Many media buying platforms offer DOOH ad inventory, and programmatic technology has made purchasing the right DOOH through various DSPs scalable and efficient. Looking for unique DOOH media opportunities? Try our free media planning software and discover various DOOH media partners.

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