Sending Love Digital OOH Awards
Grand Visual, Plexus & the World Out of Home Organization’s user-generated digital Out of Home campaign ‘Sending Love’ won the Best International Campaign award at this week’s Drum OOH awards. It was also highly commended in the Best Collaborative Campaign During Covid-19 category.

The campaign was supported by 68 different media owners in 178 cities in 38 countries and by the World Out of Home Organization, the official client. The Drum awards were supported by Alight Media.

Sending Love Digital OOH Awards

The largest user-generated execution ever for digital OOH, the campaign encouraged participants to send love to those in places they couldn’t travel to, by getting creative with the heart-hand symbol and uploading their pictures and locations to the Sending Love website.

Participants were invited to donate to the global COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund and then received a photo of their picture playing on-screen in their chosen city to share with friends and family across social channels.

Dan Dawson, Chief Creative Officer, Grand Visual says: “It’s great recognition for the hard work and effort that went into #SendingLove and all the partners globally, including WOO, that helped make the campaign the success it was. It was particularly sweet to win for a campaign that’s all about sharing messages of love and unity across the world during such difficult times.”

Adrian Skelton, Managing Partner, Talon says: “Winning such a prestigious award, is a victory for the whole OOH industry. #Sendinglove was a great example of the OOH community coming together to deliver an innovative and engaging campaign…globally. It was inspiring to see The Plexus Network, Grand Visual and our global media owner partners’ expertise and ability, bring this idea to life so quickly at such scale. As we now focus on a post COVID-19 world in 2021, I strongly believe our best work is yet to come!”


WOO President Tom Goddard says: “This campaign was originated and created by Grand Visual, Talon and Plexus and we’re proud to have supported it. As with WOO’s very recent #OurSecondChance” initiative – which will be an entry in next year’s competition, the campaign shows how well the OOH industry can pull together, to produce a message of hope for the world and also demonstrate our ability to perform with agility, at a global level.”

Grand Visual Awards Wins The Wires Digital OOH Awards
To cap off a huge year, we were incredibly proud to find ourselves the recipients of three awards, from three different awards programs, across two continents, on one evening.

To be recognised for all the hard work and effort that goes into delivering a successful campaign is incredibly rewarding. And without further ado, the winners are… 

Our evening began at ExchangeWire’s “The Wires” ceremony in London. Picking up the gong for “Best DOOH Campaign” was Hiscox with Cyber Live. Since its initial run in February 2018, this clever campaign has picked up an incredible eight awards, with The Wires bringing the total up to nine.

What makes Cyber Live a winner is it’s unique and intelligent creative. By using real-life hackers to power the campaign, Hiscox brought to life a threat that often goes unseen but can have a major impact on small businesses. In just one week the honeypot servers were attacked over 195,000 times, highlighting the very real threat and bringing to the forefront the need for cyber insurance. 

In a nearby corner of London, The Drum “Creative OOH Awards” were also taking place. Nominated for the “International Campaign” award, our global collaboration with Spotify for their annual “Wrapped” campaign saw their first real-time DOOH activation, come out on top!

The largest multi-market, dynamic execution ever for digital OOH, the campaign brought the brand’s end of the year wrap up to life. Taking advantage of DOOH’s dynamic capabilities, 2018 Wrapped gave Spotify users the chance to be featured on an iconic billboard in their closest city, alongside some of the world’s biggest stars.

Our evening ends over 5,000 miles away in Los Angeles, at the “CLIO” awards, a prestigious ceremony for the entertainment industry. It was an honour to win bronze in the “Entertainment Digital Outdoor” category for our collaboration with Amazon Prime for Good Omens. The Times Square take-over picked up its second award this month, having just won an ABBI award for Best Local Execution.

Using augmented reality to bring the apocalypse to life, the audience was plunged into Armageddon scenarios, with fish raining down from the sky, UFOs and even a Kraken. Based on the novel of the same name, the campaign was loved and shared online by one of the authors, successfully bringing the pages of the book to life.

What makes these campaigns award-winning, is having a strong understanding of the target audience. For Hiscox, it was highlighting the need for small business owners to protect themselves from cyber-criminals. Spotify rewarded its listeners with their own moment in the spotlight and Good Omens provided an immersive experience for potential viewers of the new series. And all three of these campaigns used the digital OOH medium in different ways, showcasing the full storytelling potential of digital OOH.

Dan Dawson, CCO Grand Visual said: 

“It’s absolutely amazing to be recognised with multiple awards and in multiple countries for our work – that it was all on one night makes it that little bit more exciting. Not only do these awards recognise the team at Grand Visual, who work so hard to fulfil our client’s vision, but to see these campaigns showcased as best in class examples of DOOH is something to be really proud of. As the medium continues to grow and change, it’s great to see brands being rewarded for their creative vision. Creativity is at the heart of everything that we do and storytelling is our ethos. It’s where we win.”

If you want to talk to us about any of your upcoming digital OOH campaigns, then don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Well, that was 2017. What has been a tumultuous year in the real world, has been one of relative growth, prosperity, opportunity and creative development in Out of Home media, the world over.

Scalable Stories

At Grand Visual we continued to expand and break creative milestones. Our mission this year was to advocate scalable use of the medium and to help clients craft smarter stories. Campaigns that span the diverse and rich OOH media landscape, making the most of its ubiquity. Our focus paid off and we delivered campaigns to over 48 countries this year.

Our work for a larger entertainment client saw us craft creative for a host of new markets and unique formats from Indonesia to El Salvador. We also produced “Smart Linear” campaigns for the likes of Google, Suzuki, Sainsbury’s and Bheard all of which embraced tactical storytelling at scale, pushing the breadth of previous projects and reaching new OOH audiences, some picking up creative effectiveness awards along the way.

Our Digital Director, Ric Albert, said:

This year, we’ve delivered projects to more countries and more screen formats than ever before. From international rugby matches to press junkets, the largest outdoor screen in Europe (Kazan Stadium), to a building projection in Puerto Rico, our scalable stories have filled digital canvasses across the world.

Tactical Messaging

2017 was a record year for tactical, dynamically delivered digital OOH campaigns at Grand Visual. It’s encouraging to see the accelerated adoption and more varied application of data by leading brands in the OOH arena. Forward-thinking brands continue to increase their digital investment and embrace the opportunity to be smarter with their digital OOH communication.

Highlights this year include McDonald’s tactical messaging, to remind consumers ‘how long until breakfast finishes’ in the mornings and ‘where they can pick up the latest limited edition sandwich’ at midday.

McDonalds web

Keira Kane, our technical director, adds:

“This year we integrated a wider variety of data feeds into our Digital OOH campaigns to deliver striking, contextually relevant messages for consumers. Brand campaigns that are useful, relevant and aligned with the consumer mindset can deliver a compelling call to action that boosts the performance and effectiveness of brand messaging dramatically.”

Engaging Creative

Our interactive work this year took us around the world with projects for Disney, amongst others. For too long, interactive DOOH projects have been viewed as special, one-off, premium activations. But now, digital OOH can deliver memorable, personal, and interactive experiences across multiple markets. A modular, tiered approach to interactive projects allows territories to push the technology envelope as far as their local limits allow. This is exactly what we did to help an entertainment client promote an upcoming release. We produced an interactive Augmented Reality execution which was deployed across Spain, Mexico & Brazil. A social video of the Madrid execution received over 100,000 natural views in just two days on Facebook.

Dan Dawson, our Chief Creative Technology Officer said:

Engaging campaigns serve multiple purposes. It’s often our most shared and awarded work, so it’s great to see the appetite for this extending into new territories and markets. Indeed we spotted this trend a few years ago, and clients and agencies are exploiting our ability to serve multiple levels of interaction to multiple territories from concept to execution. This can help shift engagement levels from hundreds of thousands to millions, at a small incremental cost, and is a testament to our hard-working and knowledgeable team.

The Future

2017 has been an exciting year in digital OOH. The market has moved on. From single location stunts and fixed brand messages, to tactical, plugged-in, interactive and always on campaigns that span multiple formats and territories.

As digital reaches the tipping point, set to smash 50% of UK OOH spend next year, with other key markets to follow, 2018 looks set to be our most exciting year yet. It is all to play for. Simple, scalable, tactical and engaging stories is where it’s at and we can’t wait to see where digital OOH takes us in 2018.

June was a busy awards month for Grand Visual with wins across multiple categories at Cannes Lions, Outdoor Media Awards and the Creative Tech Awards. A total of ten awards across the board with Waitrose Spring and Age UK the most successful campaigns overall for the month.

Waitrose Spring was the standout winner at the Outdoor Media Awards, taking home The Innovation Award, and both the Grand Prix and People’s Choice. Additionally, it also collected a Bronze Media Lion at the Cannes Lions Festival. The campaign was an out of home media first, with live streamed content filmed at the brand’s dairy and free range hen farms, and distributed to digital screens in 9 cities across the UK.

Another big winner for June was Age UK, whose No One Should Have No One campaign scooped up a Gold and Silver Media Lion at Cannes Lions, and the Data Award at the OMAs. It was created to raise awareness by the charity about the plight of loneliness amongst older people, in particular over the festive period. The nationwide digital OOH campaign was a great example of smart linear delivering effective creative.

Our final winner at the OMAs was for start-up brand Tailster, which came away with the SME award. Working with Talon, Tailster targeted audiences at rail and tube stations close to green parks and spaces in London, Glasgow and Edinburgh. Using a tactical approach to OOH, they were able to successfully boost their brand awareness, more than doubling their online visits in London and Scotland.

Finally, at Campaign’s Creative Tech Awards Grand Visual received a Silver for Integrated Campaign of the year for UKTV Play and a Silver for International Technology Powered Campaign of the Year for Google Play, both delivered via OpenLoop.

Overall it was a very successful month for Grand Visual and our partners, and great to be recognised for our work.

Another year of sunshine, creativity and rosé at the biggest advertising festival on earth. Let’s just start by saying I love Cannes. As well as the obligatory networking, I like to use it to do some research, to stand back and take stock of the amazing work taking place the world over.

It is always with great anticipation that I sit down with my café au lait to review the shortlist in what I guess would traditionally be our ‘home’ category – E03 ‘Use of Digital Outdoor’. It’s a category rich in creative and technical innovation, delivered on one of the fastest growing mediums in the world. A medium that has spent billions of dollars reinventing itself from a traditional media offering to a digital one that now demands its own sub category at Cannes.

So there was I, sipping my [now cold] morning coffee, pouring over the shortlisted entrants in Outdoor Lions, watching the campaign films and trying to savour the moment. And then it hit me. The disappointment. The furrowed brow.

It’s not just because our Google Programmatic and Child Rescue Alert campaigns didn’t make the cut. There were a number of campaigns using data as the catalyst for storytelling. McDonald’s use of real-time snowfall data synchronised to the ratio of cream which targeted skiers in Canada, Bond’s billboard The Boys which adapted to temperature cues in a humorous campaign for the underwear brand. However, each of these campaigns was a special build, adapted billboard or a one-off stunt in one location – all great ideas, but nothing that ran on existing infrastructure at scale.

And then there was Toyota’s Land Cruiser Emergency Network. I’m not suggesting it’s not a good concept, for a worthwhile cause, but best ‘Use of Digital Outdoor’ it surely is not. It is disappointing that a campaign can be entered into a category that it does not meet the submission criteria for, but even more disappointing when the judges fail to recognise the same criteria and go on to shortlist such work. Digital Outdoor has in fact been a category plagued by campaigns that do not fit category criteria since its introduction in 2009. Organisers will need to tighten up on category rules and ensure that judges are on board with agreed definitions of what Digital Outdoor is going forward.

That aside, the rest of the shortlisted work was of a very high standard with some interesting use of technology including voice activation for ESPN, contactless payments for the Melanoma Institute, and thermal-imaging for GlaxoSmithKline’s Theraflu in Poland. Bronzes for Saatchis Poland and Forsman and Bodenfors Gothenburg were worthy winners as was Clemenger BBDO Melbourne taking home a silver lion for its weather activated giant digital billboard. Each campaign demonstrated good use of technology and creativity working in synergy in the DOOH space to provide useful and contextualised information that is tailored to the audience mindset.

Also under Outdoor Lions are categories for all digital ‘out-of-home’ work including all digital screens and ambient use of digital. My favourite winner here was in C03 – from Jung von Matt, The Great Escape – which also took home awards for best use of screens at Media Lions. The execution is an entertaining and rewarding interaction with a live billboard that both surprised and delighted passers-by.

Overall, the UK had a fairly poor showing in the ‘Screens, Digital Billboards or Digital Outdoor’ categories across Media, Outdoor and Cyber Lions this year. This seems odd given our status in the market as an innovator and is not reflective of the rich work that has been done here in the UK in the last 12 months.

So as I consider the state of the DOOH space creatively it seems that the problem is not with the creative that’s being delivered to DOOH – the last 12 months has seen some excellent work globally. I think the problem is that it’s either not been submitted to Lions, or it’s being wrongly judged against submissions that are not meeting category criteria correctly. The awarding body’s understanding and consensus of what ‘digital outdoor’ is, needs to be fleshed out and better understood for 2017.

Oreo Eclipse Linear DIgital OOH

Grand Visual, in partnership with Talon and PHD UK, took home the Brand Republic Digital Award for Best DOOH campaign this month for Oreo Eclipse. Additionally this month, Oreo Eclipse also won a D&AD pencil within the Tactical Outdoor category.

Last year Mondelez – known for its tactical campaigns – set out to capitalise on the notoriously bad British weather and provide people across the country with the only eclipse they were likely to see. The #OreoEclipse campaign, which included print & social media, became one the stand out campaigns of 2015.

With the latest two additions to our awards shelf, #OreoEclipse has now become Grand Visual’s most “winning” campaign, capturing a record 18 awards including a Bronze Cannes Lion, a D&AD and a Gold Obie Award.

This week saw the announcement of the winners of this year’s Creative Circle Awards and we were thrilled to be one of the biggest winners with a massive seven awards going to two of the campaigns we’ve helped to create in the past year.

There were three gold awards for the Pepsi Max Unbelievable Bus Shelter we created with AMV BBDO including Best Use of Medium, Best Special Build and Best Integrated campaign. There was also a Best Digital Poster gold award for McDonalds See One. Want One created by us alongside Leo Burnett – a tremendous total of 4 golds in all!

And the winning didn’t stop there. We were also awarded two further silvers for the Pepsi Max Unbelievable work and one more silver for the McDonalds work.

We were even recognised with 5 nominations for the two big campaign winners above and including one for our work with BBH on the Audi Dashboard.

The awards scheme is run and judged by creatives and it traditionally showcases a wide range of excellent creative work across a number of different mediums. To be given this recognition by the creative community is very exciting and shows how creativity really is thriving in digital out of home.


MediaPost created the Digital Out-of-Home Awards to recognise the most innovative and effective advertisements in Digital Out of Home media.  Grand Visual was one of the most awarded agencies at the ceremony held in NYC, taking Best-in-Show in the ‘Industry Vertical’ category for ‘Lynx Apollo’, an interactive campaign which enabled spectators to project their own faces onto the visor of a 12-meter tall astronaut. The campaign also won the Consumer Packaged Goods category.

‘Mischievous Minions’, Grand Visual’s interactive mobile-controlled campaign for Universal Pictures won the Mobile Integration category. Both campaigns were powered by OpenLoop, the campaign management dashboard for delivering live, dynamic, Digital Out of Home campaigns across multiple networks.

The judging panel consisted of experts from the fields of advertising, marketing, digital technology and outdoor media.

A digital out of home campaign helped to reunite missing people with their loved ones

Grand Visual’s partnership with the charity Missing People and the Outdoor Media Centre which delivers weekly appeals for missing people to digital billboards across the UK, has been highly commended at this years BIMA awards held at One Mayfair on 12th September 2013.

The highly coveted BIMA Awards celebrate the best work on the British digital scene. The Missing People Weekly Appeals campaign was recognised by the judges in the category ‘Public Life’ which champions innovative projects or campaigns for public bodies or the public good.  The Weekly Appeals help to reunite missing people with their loved ones using digital outdoor media space donated by the outdoor media industry.

Grand Visual’s Open Loop technology has enabled the Missing People charity to update digital billboard appeals instantly at the touch of a button and also to regionalise their search so that the media is used more effectively with multiple searches running simultaneously. So far the campaign has helped to find 78 people as well as building awareness about the charity’s work and being a source of comfort to those families still searching for loved ones.

Missing People Chief Executive Jo Youle said:

“This partnership has been very powerful in helping us to support families by showing them that everything possible is being done to find their missing loved one, and has helped us bring people home safely.

“We’re so lucky to have this medium available to us.  Our partners’ expertise and resources are invaluable and the ongoing donation of advertising space, from a variety of media owners across the UK, is still astounding.”

Watch the campaign video here

On 28th February, the creative talents behind the UK’s greatest outdoor ads of the past two years gathered at the Institute of Contemporary Arts to find out which campaigns had earned a place in the Campaign and Outdoor Media Centre’s prestigious Outdoor Hall of Fame.

Fourteen pieces of work were inducted into the Hall of Fame including ‘Angel Ambush’ our augmented reality campaign with Mindshare Invention for Unilever’s Lynx in 2011 – and the first digital ad to make it into the gallery.

The latest work to be selected as standard-bearers for outdoor creativity, were chosen by a public vote followed by consideration from a creative panel. The judging panel included: John Treacy, the executive creative director at Elvis; Peter Souter, the chairman and chief creative officer at TBWA\London; James Hilton, the co-founder and chief creative officer at AKQA; Mick Mahoney, the executive creative director at Havas Worldwide London; and Owen Lee, the executive creative director at Inferno.