Strategy, engagement & innovation

Take OOH to the next level

Out of Home (OOH) advertising is often sidelined by marketers in their advertising and media marketing mix but creative agencies feel it’s the most innovative platform for advertising.

“There is a gross mismatch in what outdoor can deliver and what people think it can,” said Sudeep Narayan, Marketing and PR director, Volvo Auto India.

He added that advertising shouldn’t be limited to hoardings; outdoor is about having an expression of ‘oooooohhhhhh’ on the face of the consumer.

It’s a known fact that consumers spend most of the time out of their home and the OOH medium can work very effectively for them, taking into account the latest technology available.

“OOH is growing through its natural evolution. The way content is consumed is changing at a rapid space and even OOH needs to move in that direction,” said Rajan Mehta, Founder, LiveMedia.

“It’s a matter of time when all hoardings will become digital and real-time,” he added.

Moving on to the real estate sector that uses OOH medium regularly and highlighting the significance of outdoor in this sector, Bharat Dhuppar, CMO, Omkar Realtors and Developers said, “The amount of money you spend in newspaper in one day, you can get hoardings for a period of thirty days for the same amount. The return on investment and brand recall is definitely much stronger on hoardings. And if target audience is local, it works tremendously.”

Marketers are shying away from this medium. There is light attitude towards OOH and when clients visit agencies, the outdoor plan is considered last and sometime not even discussed at all.

Sharing his opinion on the seriousness of the matter, Pramod Bhandula, MD, JC Decaux said, “The industry really has to get serious. It cannot go the way it is right now. We have to revisit and innovate. As media owners we don’t go to the basics. Media owners and agencies should complement each other so the pie can get bigger.”

Experts believe that this industry has not got the recognition it deserve, and brands and agencies need to take some initiative in this respect.

“Has this industry received the recognition and respect it actually deserves? I don’t believe so. We talk about TV, print and new media with all due respect but when it comes to outdoor, it is shortchanged and left behind in the media plan. This is not a hoarding industry, this is the OOH industry,” said Ajay Kakar, CMO, Financial Services, Aditya Birla Group.

The above mentioned industry leaders shared their views during a panel discussion on ‘Role of strategy, engagement and innovation’ at the third edition of exchange4media and network2media’s OOH Conference and Awards held on March 22, 2013 in Gurgaon.