The Future of Outdoor Advertising

OOH has seen a lot of transition since the last two decades- from hand-painted hoardings to vinyl to now digital, it has been a journey of extremes for OOH industry. It has always been a phase of trials for OOH; still, the openness of adapting to the ever so dynamic media environment has helped OOH to stand through the test of evolution amid the rapid growth of other media forms. The most significant enabler for the growth of the medium lies in the fact that there is no “Ad block” or “Skip Ad”, which most of the medium today are suffering from. OOH has passed the test of time because of its inherent strength of creating brand awareness to a large section of the population.

However, the dominance of online media advertising and technological innovation has called for OOH advertising to bring in the vital element in the modern-day advertising world, i.e. DIGITAL. DOOH is simply the integration of offline Out of Home advertising with digital components. Traditional OOH was dull and boring that required a lot of human efforts for implementation, which is not the case with DOOH. DOOH allows you to monitor, track, modify and customize content at your own discretion and on a real-time basis as well. The most significant features of DOOH are:

  1. Content Creation: Content is of prime importance for any type of advertising because that is what will attract and engage the consumers to the brand. DOOH allows you to display dynamic and creative content based on demographics, display locations, seasons, trends and many more details.
  2. Better ROI: Investment in traditional OOH is recurring and extremely high since they require labour costs for implementation, printing and installation with enhanced time consumption. DOOH can be installed quickly with the only overhead cost of screens and setup. This helps in reducing the overall advertising budgets of the advertisers.
  3. Location and Visibility: The most essential factor of any OOH, location!! What can obstruct the view of a digital display board!! DOOH offers a brand-safe environment with unparallel visibility. Ads are twice likely to be seen and much more impactful than static OOH ads.

However, smart digital billboards are still seeing its early days in India, with only 2% of the overall OOH industry, according to a report by MAGNA, IPG Mediabrands’ research arm. The report predicts that the DOOH industry will see an all-inclusive growth of 5% of the OOH industry by 2023. Companies like SBI Life Insurance, LG, Netflix, ICC and IPL prefer digital OOH to traditional OOH. Because of the visual superiority of display and other strategic advantages, digital display rates are more than that of static display rates. But the costs to the brands can be kept in check since one single DOOH board allows multiple companies to book slots on the same display board during the day. This lets the media owners split the cost among numerous brand owners.

Furthermore, industry observers believe that digital OOH is expected to play a massive role in transit media. Metros are expected to see a significant influx of DOOH in the next couple of years, and transit media as a medium will grow by 25%. For instance, the Adidas campaign for Nite Jogger shoes grabbed the attention of many. The campaign rolled out in Gurgaon, which is part of Delhi and National Capital Region (NCR), had installed creatives on 20 consecutive metro pillars which created a GIF-likee effect coming alive in a ‘flip-book’ feel.

Even though India has started adopting into DOOH, it is still a long way to go. But the way DOOH is gaining pace in India, growing at a rate double that of traditional OOH, our country is not far away from getting our own Times Square, which is considered as the Mecca of OOH.

Although DOOH is the need of the hour, we cannot totally ignore the importance of traditional OOH. The future of OOH is about being more interactive and experiential, especially after the current pandemic the world is going through.  So, it’s always a good idea to engage with consumers through advertising. Skyrams Advertising Pvt Ltd has come up with a lot of ideas as to how customer engagement is possible in the bus shelters during their waiting period, like installation of hands-free sanitizer dispenser within the bus shelters. So it’s about time we embrace the future, grow our DOOH landscape, start taking programmatic approach towards digital advertising and focus on interactive DOOH to become more and more experiential, impactful, interactive and taking over customers’ mind space.


Devleena Ghosh

Assistant Sales Manager