Digital Out of Home (DOOH) explained: Suitable for reaching niche audiences yet?
Out-of-home advertising, or OOH, refers to any type of ads and marketing materials that are displayed outside of the consumer’s home, such as on billboards, buses, posters, airports, taxis, and street furniture. Traditionally, OOH advertising was not a viable option for B2B marketers targeting a niche audience, due to the high cost, low measurability, and broad reach of this medium.
However, with the emergence of digital technology, data analytics, and mobile integration, OOH advertising has transformed into DOOH (Digital Out-of-Home) advertising, which offers many benefits for B2B marketers who want to create impactful, memorable, and measurable campaigns that can complement their online and offline strategies for brand awareness.
With the rise of programmatic advertising, a variety of DOOH platforms have appeared that allow marketers to target digital ads on screens through SaaS platforms, with a much lower minimum campaign fee and with razor-focused geographical targeting. The budget barrier is largely removed with programmatic platforms, making OOH advertising more affordable than ever.
As an agency that only works with B2B marketers targeting a niche, we’ve been evaluating three of the main platforms that are suitable for our clients’ business requirements: Framen, StackAdapt, and Sage+Archer (by Vistar Media). Each of these platforms offers an advanced user-friendly digital interface (currently in development for StackAdapt), and supports creative formats that span imagery, animation, and video, providing a perfect extension to your existing digital campaigns. The creative requirements are pretty much similar to the traditional digital channels, so brands can also repurpose the existing content for the DOOH campaigns.
In terms of targeting, when targeting a niche, the ideal scenario would be to surround a target company’s office building with your ads. Unfortunately, the availability of placements means that this level of sophistication is not always possible yet with the programmatic platforms. Some exist, but they are not guaranteed. There is also a lot of potential wastage as you reach all employees using this channel, not just the roles you identify. For technology brands looking to provide adoption support, this still has value.
In fact, only 4% of overall Out-of-Home ad spend is done through programmatic platforms in the UK. This varies greatly for different countries with Germany (58% of overall OOH ad spend) & The Netherlands (32%) leading the adoption of programmatic DOOH platforms. This is also evident with the available inventories of these platforms with some more suited to certain markets than others. Framen is mainly relevant for running DOOH campaigns in Germany & The Netherlands while the Sage+Archer platform is a good option for campaigns targeting the United Kingdom. There isn’t a single major global platform to set up DOOH campaigns as of now, with different tools being prominent in different
In addition to the regional limitations for these platforms, there are also issues in proving the impact/ROI with using such platforms and these campaigns do not result in many website visits/conversions. Three in every 10 respondents (who all had experience in DOOH) said that establishing appropriate goals has prevented them from including DOOH in their media mix more frequently. The channel remains relevant mostly for brand awareness campaigns.
What we have observed though is that DOOH as a channel provides an innovative way of supplementing your presence at industry events and increasing brand/product exposure for the attendees during commute hours by targeting screens around the venue or on relevant travel routes. Across our target sectors, the same venues are used frequently and focusing on those in the UK – the Birmingham NEC and London Excel being the most common choices. For these venues, at the time of writing, there are over 50 available placements within 10 km radius on these platforms.
We’ve also noted that if you are targeting a future B2B workforce, such as those Generation Z-ers who are at universities with campuses, this provides an interesting route to reach them. This is also an interesting way for anyone looking at sourcing new talent or running employer branding campaigns beyond the traditional digital marketing channels.
1. Place-based ads: reach your B2B audience in specific geographic locations they frequently visit for work or leisure.
2. Commuter ads: target the well-traveled routes and transportation hubs used by your B2B audience during their daily commutes.
3. Event and trade show ads: Target the events and trade shows your B2B audience would attend or exhibit at.
4. ABM focused: Utilise digital billboard ads targeting the location of offices and headquarters of your target accounts.
5. QR code ads: Invite your audience to scan a QR code with their smartphones through the use of interactive and engaging ads.
In conclusion, for B2B marketers targeting a niche – the main place for DOOH as it stands is as part of their event strategy! The adoption of programmatic platforms for OOH advertising is rising rapidly as they offer ease of use, meaning running these campaigns becomes ever more accessible for modern marketers.
Get in touch with our team to discuss possibilities of OOH advertising for your B2B business.