#Getoutofhome digital OOH
To inspire and excite the ad industry about the power of OOH, the Outdoor Advertising Association of America (OAAA) and its members have initiated a national OOH campaign, to prove its value and significance in today’s digital world. Running across more than 50,000 OOH sites, #GetOutOfHome includes 27 digital screen networks, in 30 major US markets, over the coming weeks.

Touting the value of OOH as a great media amplifier, the campaign, created by Publicis New York, features ad industry icons, young creative thinkers and social media influencers. To encourage attendees of Advertising Week NY (October 1-4) to engage in the conversation, a real-time digital OOH campaign will run as part of the activity using the hashtag #GetOutOfHome.

#GetOutOfHome Digital OOH

Produced by Grand Visual, the dynamic creative will include live commentary, tweets, and Instagram posts published direct to digital screens across New York City. OpenLoop, the real-time campaign management and distribution platform from ad tech provider, QDOT, will deliver the live commentary and buzz from Advertising Week’s online social engagement to screens across NYC in a showcase that highlights the medium’s flexibility and relevance.

“Today’s advertising creatives and media planners grew up with the internet in the palm of their hands; they get digital media and push it forward,” said Stephen Freitas, OAAA’s chief marketing officer. “We want to show them some ideas are too big to stay trapped online. Bold ideas need a bold platform.”

#GetOutOfHome digital OOH

Ben Putland, MD of QDOT, said: “The technology and ad tech systems are now in place to make the delivery of real-time creative across multiple digital OOH networks seamless. Flexible, contextual messages complement the broader static campaign whilst responding to social triggers and encouraging people to participate online.”

Josh Horn, Creative Director, Publicis New York, commented, “OOH has become the ultimate stage for brands to get their message seen. It’s contextual, measurable and responsive. We wanted to celebrate its power to amplify today’s best campaigns.”

#GetOutOfHome NYC Taxi Top

This article first appeared on OOH Today on 29th May 2018.

Our Chief Creative and Technology Officer, Dan Dawson, and Jon Conway, the Chief Strategy Officer from Talon sat down after their panel session at the GO2018 OOH Conference and discussed their highlights from the Texas event.

Both OOH experts were part of a panel which explored data-driven creativity, here are their thoughts…

Why were you there?

Dan Dawson: Grand Visual has been attending the OAAA/Geopath conference since we opened our New York office in 2014. There is no other event like it for bringing together all the stakeholders from across the OOH landscape for some great knowledge sharing, debate, and networking.

Jon Conway: We recently opened Talon New York, our first office outside of the UK. The conference felt like the ideal opportunity to see the US industry up close and under one roof. Talon has established itself as a leading out-of-home agency in the UK, but the US is in a league of its own in terms of scale and opportunity and it was so valuable to hear from the major players and understand more about the issues keeping them up at night.

data-driven creativity talon grand visual digital OOH

What was your #GO2018 conference highlight?

Dan Dawson: For me, the highlight was Nancy Fletcher’s keynote. Whilst summarizing the successes, the phenomenal rate of change and the growth potential of the industry, Nancy then got to the heart of the matter, with a rallying call for more meaningful industry collaboration between vendors, owners, agencies and specialists. It’s no longer ‘speculate to accumulate’, but ‘collaborate to innovate and innovate to accumulate’. For me, that really is the crux of it. All the best work we’ve produced over the years has come out of a cohesive, close-knit, multi-agency relationship, where all parties are collaborating from the start. Another highlight was the social side, meeting and catching up with industry friends, sharing OOH stories, and indulging in Austin’s finest Salt Lick BBQ, possibly the best #AustinBBQ ever… #Ribs #Beer #Repeat.

Jon Conway: I thought the whole event was impressive and the high production values created an atmosphere where people felt proud to be part of the industry. I found Geopath President Kym Frank’s keynote on the evolution of OOH measurement powerful. I believe this is a critical issue for the industry today. As Kym said, advertisers are demanding independent measurement and they do not want to transact media based on a currency generated by an agency or publisher. The work that Geopath is doing to refine audience measurement and provide a trusted, universal currency addresses advertisers’ needs will help the industry to thrive.

What was your conference breakout session about?

Dan Dawson: The focus of our session was ‘Right Audience, Right Moment and Right Message.’ 3 simple rules that we believe makes an effective digital OOH campaign… but in essence, they are the foundation of any OOH campaign.

Jon Conway: The growth of digital inventory has been a catalyst for creativity and effectiveness. But it is not just about digital screens, it’s also the signals we use to understand audiences and locations and the intelligent technologies used to build and deliver campaigns that respond to those signals. Speaking about this in terms of audience, moment and message makes sense, because thinking about media and creative together produces better advertising.

Dan Dawson: Good point Jon – That digital inventory is now supported by adtech platforms and workflows that allow creative to react and change during the course of a campaign. Dynamic creative, joins the dots between data-driven media planning and the mindset of a consumer at a given time, in a given place. That is powerful.

You two guys are based in the UK, what do you see as the biggest difference between our OOH markets?

Dan Dawson: The main differences are size and agility, and yes the two are linked. The UK is geographically the size of Michigan with a population around the size of California and Texas combined. The total UK OOH market is worth $1.5b (10% share of national ad spend), 47% of that is now coming from digital OOH. In the US OOH is a phenomenal $7b market [around 13% DOOH] contributing to 4.1% of the overall national ad spend. In the UK, most of the national OOH campaigns come from London-based agencies. Because of this, the budgets, concepts and innovative work streams can be done in an agile way with local inter-agency collaboration. The US market is more fragmented, which is expected due to the geographical and market size.

But both markets have consistent growth, partly fueled by digital OOH, transforming paper to pixel and opening the digital door to advertisers who want to behave smarter. Technology wise we’re largely the same – The media owners employ similar systems here as in the UK, so coupled with our API the integration for our technology stack has been relatively straightforward.

Jon Conway: There are clear differences in scale and geographical spread of audiences and urban areas, and this impacts the types of campaigns that we can deliver in the UK vs the US. Digitization also seems to have progressed more rapidly in the UK. Well over 50% of Talon’s UK media billings derived from digital campaigns last year. But, looking at the bigger picture, I think there are more similarities than differences. At the conference, we heard how the US market is grappling with the same basic challenge we face in the UK – how to capitalise on OOH’s core strengths and digital transformation to create better advertising and grow revenues. We’re confident that our approach to this challenge can work on both sides of the pond. That’s why we chose to open our first international office in the US.

Hiscox Cyber Live Data-Driven CReativity digital OOH

How can the OOH industry embrace technology to help deliver the right message to the right audience at the right moment in time?

Jon Conway: In a digital world, right audience, right message, right moment becomes more important because we’re confronted with the reality of out-of-home audiences and locations. We see people continually moving around, conditions shifting, and the personality of locations changing from one moment to the next. If we don’t respond by serving relevant ads, there’s an opportunity cost – our campaigns will be less effective at achieving their goals. How do we embrace technology to enable relevant, effective advertising? I think it’s already happening, We see an important part of our role being to manage this complexity and make it easy for advertisers to navigate the landscape and be effective. Being relevant doesn’t need to be complicated and we’ve seen time and again that these campaigns are more successful – delivering higher recall, with the positive brand associations of being useful and relevant, and driving business outcomes.

Google is a case in point. We’ve helped them to deliver world-class out-of-home advertising in the UK for products like the Google App, YouTube and Pixel and through their always-on placement in central London. Advertisers like Google are increasing out-of-home media spend year after year and producing award-winning campaigns. It’s working for them, and for our business, so we think it’s a model that could also help drive growth for the US market.

Dan Dawson: It’s simple evolution. As Jon says, the technology is helping us to be smarter about audiences and is helping to inform the creative message. By understanding audiences, you can create moments that trigger or update creative messages – crafting stories that are contextually relevant to a given location/time/audience. The OOH industry has always worked hard on its data. In fact, during Kym’s keynote at the conference, there was a very funny clip from the days when media owners would use human captured traffic data to decide where to put a roadside billboard. Today, live and legacy data is used to provide deeper insights into audience frame of mind. Now we’re able to paint a data-driven picture, we’re able to tailor messages accordingly instantly.

As we look to the future what are some tech solutions, concepts or practices that excite you and could elevate DOOH in the US?

Jon Conway: The role of technology in out-of-home – just like any industry – should be to make our work easier to produce whilst delivering better outcomes for our clients. What excites me, and what I believe can elevate out-of-home, is integrated digital and out-of-home operations. That’s about teams of people with the right mix of expertise, working together to deliver campaigns with consistent audience data and reporting. We absolutely see a future in which our people will be fully embedded in client and agency teams. They’ll work side-by-side with digital buyers and they’ll use complementary technologies to manage out-of-home alongside online investments. Some of that technology will be designed specifically for out-of-home audiences and locations, that’s a big part of what we’re focused on at Talon.

Dan Dawson: For me, it’s practices, not tech. I think the technology stack is there, now it is just about connecting them. We are on our way to realizing exponential growth, as systems become further connected with a programmatic OOH future not too far away. Opening up to online DSPs is an obvious way to encourage new money into OOH. But to sustain that revenue, the ad placements must prove to be effective, with the correct message and transparent, robust and agnostic reporting. That is where display and OOH differ in terms of system, so for OOH it highlights the need for specialist knowledge and tools.

We must all embrace change, technology, and collaboration. However, we have to remember that it’s the humans in our industry that will make this happen…. not the machines. I see the growth in OOH and digital OOH being designed by humans, driven by data and delivered by machine…. Creating efficiency at every step.


This piece was first published by OAAA on 05/19/2017. 

NEW YORK, NY (May 19, 2017)— Today, on Endangered Species Day, the National Geographic Society and members of the Outdoor Advertising Association of America (OAAA), will launch a groundbreaking OOH campaign driven by user generated content and featuring a range of animals at risk shared via the hashtag #SaveTogether. Organized by OAAA, the extensive campaign launches on digital billboards across Times Square and other major U.S. cities today and continues throughout the summer across a range of billboards and other OOH formats donated by OAAA members from across the country.

The campaign kicks off at Noon with an hour-long digital billboard takeover and interactive experience in Times Square. Members of the public are encouraged to look for National Geographic Photo Ark posters, snap a selfie with the endangered animal, and share via Instagram or Twitter using  #SaveTogether. Participants are quickly rewarded with their moment of fame as their image is published on iconic digital billboards.

The digital OOH activity is driven by OpenLoop, the real-time campaign management and distribution platform donated by ad tech specialist, QDOT. Meanwhile, dozens of other Times Square billboards will feature video and stills of animals from the Photo Ark spanning the city’s digital amphitheater before disappearing in a symbolic execution underlying the importance of helping to save these species while there’s still time.

“The OOH industry annually donates more than $500 million in media space to support public service efforts,” said OAAA President & CEO Nancy Fletcher. “With its proven ability to amplify social and digital media, engage audiences, and ignite change, OOH is the perfect medium to build awareness around the #SaveTogether campaign.”

Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. are among some of the major markets that will also participate in the Endangered Species Day launch of the #SaveTogether campaign through local digital OOH activations. Across the county, more than 45,000 digital OOH screens will feature Photo Ark images.

“Digital OOH is the perfect medium to amplify National Geographic’s social media campaign, extending the reach and impact of their digital strategy to millions of people across the U.S.,” said Ben Putland, MD of DQOT. “This rich and timely interactive execution helps to engage audiences today and throughout the duration of the campaign.”

After May 19, the campaign will expand throughout the U.S. where Photo Ark animals will be featured on printed and digital billboards, bus shelters, airport dioramas, mall kiosks and other OOH formats.

Learn more and donate at PhotoArk.org and join the conversation on social media with #SaveTogether.

At the start of September, we partnered with the OAAA for the launch of their OOH campaign designed to increase voter registration and encourage people to vote in the Presidential election this November.

On September 6th, the campaign blanketed Times Square with OOH ads covering billboards, bus shelters, subway cars and more throughout New York City. The ads show that no matter what ‘labels’ Americans have, the only label that really counts is Voter.

The event in Times Square was the official launch of the campaign with a team on the ground encouraging passers-by to submit their own ‘labels’. The dynamic creative then updated, broadcasting these personalised ‘labels’ live to the thousands of people in Times Square.

Nancy Fletcher, president and CEO at OAAA, said

“We are completely nonpartisan in this effort, we are not trying to boost the standing of any party or candidate, rather use OOH, a highly engaging and effective medium, to provoke action in a way that is constructive during a time that really matters.”

OAAA Labels 940x520

The OOH ads will drive digital engagement by directing viewers to VoteToCount.com where they can access their state’s voter registration pages. An interactive label generator allows visitors to choose their own labels, showcasing what they value and believe, and share on social media.

In the lead up to election day on November 8, the campaign will roll out in major cities including Boston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami, Chicago and Las Vegas.

Out of home advertising professionals gathered last week in Boca Raton, FL for the TAB/OAAA “ BIG Picture” conference. It was Grand Visual’s 3rd year attending, and it was heartening to see digital, data and technology taking centre stage. Ben & Neil have shared their highlights from this years event.

A Vibrant Canvas

As with most advertising conferences right now, online and ad-blocking featured on the agenda. Gerry Graf, founder and Chief Creative Officer of Barton F Graft 9000 said: “Online is swallowing other media but it can’t swallow Out-of-Home because it can’t replicate the real life experience of OOH.”

A sentiment shared by the creative community – with consensus across the event that OOH is still as big and bold as it’s always been and digital adds a level of agility and richness. Ted Florea of PNYC, discussed OAAA’s “Feel the Real” campaign which “delivered eight different levels and 288 individual creative messages.” A campaign which proved OOH is no longer a one-size-fits-all model and sets of creative assets should work together to create a unified whole.

Change; Building a Team for the Future

It was great to hear solutions for how the industry should navigate as it moves towards a more digital future. Futurist Mike Walsh said: “Young people expect everything in the physical world should work like magic”. Digital has the opportunity to make OOH a truly magical medium for the generations to come. He continued, to prepare for a changing future the question is, “what capabilities in your team will be less relevant in 5 years time? What skills will be absolutely essential?”
An essential consideration as the OOH medium evolves. We need to recognise that functions that have been around for years will be replaced by those enabling new digital capabilities. Holding on to old behaviours will stifle evolution just when we need be nurturing new ways of working.

Making the most of Digital

With available levels of data and digital inventory increasing, it was great to hear the question being asked if we are making the most of these opportunities. Dennis Camlek, Turner Media stated: “Advertisers like digital because it’s easy to target, deploy and report.” Whilst digital solves some problems, it also reveals others with Jennifer Seickel, from OOH Pitch stating “On major digital flights we cannot even get logs or Proof of Play reports within the flight period and when we have contextual or triggered creative reporting becomes even more important”

Whilst targeting is getting better with initiatives by organisations such as Geopath with mobile data, deployment and reporting are still far from “easy”. In order to see best use of the medium, we need to be able to tick the “easy” box on each of those tasks. As we move towards a programmatic future it is essential we get reporting right.

Whist it was great to see digital feature so heavily across the agenda, it was shame that digital campaigns are not yet represented in all categories at the OBIE Awards. Our hope is that next year digital campaigns will infiltrate all categories, and not be confined to one section of the awards programme.

At this years awards GV had a record 4 campaigns shortlisted, and we made off with two OBIES! We took home a Gold for the ‘Oreo Eclipse’ campaign which ran during last year’s solar eclipse in the UK. We were equally delighted to be awarded a Silver OBIE for our ‘Disney Shadows’ campaign. A perfect end to a great conference.

The new Old Street EC1 screen running the YouTube Beacons campaign
By Ben Putland, COO, Grand Visual

About 30 years ago in the UK, some clever clogs at FCO Univas stuck a Ford Cortina, the ubiquitous car of its day, on to a 48-sheet billboard to sell glue. It was a brilliantly creative use of out of home, one that sits in the Out of Home Hall of Fame. But what is the modern day equivalent?

Today digital technology now drives and inspires out of home creativity in ways we could previously only dream about. Digital out of home (DOOH) is delivering intelligent advertising at real scale.

Brilliantly disruptive outdoor ideas are no longer rarefied art pieces to be enjoyed in person by the lucky few. DOOH offers creative advertisers the opportunity for their work to be experienced for real, and in context, by mass audiences.

DOOH provides advertising creatives with a richer palette of potential. Genuinely interactive and immersive experiences can be used to captivate individuals sitting at bus stops or making their way through train stations. Brands can now hack into the real lives of their audience. Relevant, emotional engagement is the critical part of the process and the creative technology solutions we obsess over work to support this goal.

Thanks to the development of smartphone technology, social networks and the emergence of the tech-savvy consumer, DOOH can also sit comfortably at the heart of an integrated ad strategy. As DOOH becomes more “digital” it becomes more agile, it becomes richer and it is more able to play its part in a big idea that is carried across multiple channels.

We see it more and more that DOOH can be more than just support – it can be an active element in a multi-layered campaign and this is where DOOH’s future lies.

DOOH allows consumers to become part of the campaign in the course of their everyday lives and to share it with all their friends. It’s the equivalent of climbing inside Araldite’s Cortina in 1983 and then driving round to your mate’s house to show off your new tube of glue.

Digital has made out of home agile. Sites are no longer simply static on which to display an unchanging message. They now can be dynamic and fleet-of-foot –topical, charming opportunities to comment on real-world events in real-life environments.

As the industry continues to invest heavily with new digital inventory, a nationwide DOOH campaign can easily communicate an of-the-moment message, invite interaction via social channels and be updated in real time through the use of tools like OpenLoop.

For example, with a precisely-timed animation, giant Oreo cookies partially eclipsed the sun to coincide with an actual solar event. The creative ran for two hours on Friday 20 March matching the trajectory of the eclipse in real time in the UK.

The proliferation of digital inventory across the US, Europe, Australia and the Middle and Far East means that tactical global DOOH campaigns are also now possible, practical and make sense in terms of leveraging campaign execution budgets. This is a real plus for DOOH as a channel boosting its chances of attracting media budget. As an industry we need to ensure that we keep up with the human investment required to make the most of this ever-changing, massively creative medium.

Digital technology – in partnership with genius creativity – has brought the scale and impact of the medium closer to the hearts and minds of consumers than ever before. Smarter and more dynamic creative should be the norm by now. Tactical and smart creative that uses data to contextualize messaging and target audiences is not “innovation” and should not go in the “innovation” box and used only for special occasions.

According to Posterscope UK, “currently less than 5% of DOOH incorporates an element of real-time in the UK. So there is huge ‘head room’ for growing the level of dynamic activity to reach client ambition. To do that we must challenge every brief response with smart digital enhancement and, by doing so, make dynamic campaigns ‘every day not ‘special’”.

Finally, if we want a truly digital medium – one that can offer flexibility, intelligence, speed and relevance – we must embrace a campaign flow that is complex to manage and maintain. Smart campaigns inevitably bring an abundance of permutations from scheduling through to triggers and outcomes. Stakeholders must have visibility of all of these moving parts as a campaign runs. Monitoring and reporting are key to ensuring a campaign runs correctly. So if we want this truly digital medium to continue its success, visibility and reporting must come as part and parcel of it.

As an industry, we have come a long way over the past 10 years but where do we go from here?
● We must lose the “emerging media” badge for DOOH – it’s an excuse to be sub-optimal.
● We must not rest on our laurels or be resistant to further change.
● We must be proactive in terms of process, systems, infrastructure and talent.

Albert Einstein said:
“Life is like riding a bike. To keep your balance you must keep moving.”

And that is definitely true for DOOH. To not fall over in a constantly evolving digital media ecosystem we must be proactive and keep moving forward.

**This article originally appeared on YourOAAA’s website as part of their Thought Leadership programme.

Pepsi MAX Bus Shelter Augmented Reality interactive digital OOH

AMV BBDO & Grand Visual earned a Gold OBIE Award at the Outdoor Advertising Association of America’s (OAAA) 2015 OBIE Awards. We were recognised for our augmented reality Pepsi Max bus shelter in London.

Pepsi MAX unbelievable bus shelter

The OBIE Awards are one of the oldest and most prestigious advertising programs, honouring creative excellence in out of home (OOH) advertising campaigns.

Inspired by the idea that Pepsi Max urges its consumers to push themselves “to the max” and accomplish “unbelievable” feats, AMV BBDO & Grand Visual pushed the boundaries of technical innovation. Augmented reality features were installed in a London bus shelter, and passersby became a part of a truly “unbelievable” experience as the scenery around them was disturbed by flying saucers, wild animals, and other out-of-this-world encounters.

“This bus shelter execution illustrates that OOH has become one of the most engaging, interactive, and innovative media in the world,” said Stephen Freitas, OAAA chief marketing officer. “Through the brilliance of augmented reality, Pepsi Max masterfully disrupted a standard shelter and captured the attention of consumers who passed it.”

The complete list of OBIE winners and finalists can be found at www.obieawards.org.