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The Influencers

How the Ultimate DOOH Poster Kids are Recalibrating the Meaning of Iconic

INFLUENCER: Ocean Group's Richard Malton unveils six elements that are redefining how brands reach and connect with mobile, digital citizens

How the Ultimate DOOH Poster Kids are Recalibrating the Meaning of Iconic

There’s no arguing that digital out of home is a high impact branding and content channel which is growing market share through continued investment in the way it’s used. 

That’s down to an imaginative collective of start-ups, incubators and agencies who are collaborating to bring new technologies to life and reinventing a traditional advertising medium which is now successfully competing in the all screen marketplace with mobile, TV and video.

But in the very over-crowded world of places, structures, environments, experiences and, well, the internet’s things, how can big, bold, sassy screens honestly lay claim to the notion that they are iconic?

Iconic. A massively over-used word often all too loosely applied, much to the annoyance of editors and commentators who grow noticeably fed up when the PR machine goes into overdrive. Which it does.

It’s definitely time to recalibrate and to help. We’ve come up with six points of reference to explain what we mean when we refer to iconic DOOH and on what ground we make that claim. 

Taken together, these six elements are redefining how brands reach and connect with mobile, digital citizens in the most memorable and dramatic ways.

Scale – size matters in this game and the new generation of super premium outdoor screens have size in abundance. Think generous girths, long curves, elegant towers and funky triple screen walls which can talk to the oncoming traffic. 

Impact – neuroscience has measured the emotional impact of sites of scale, showing how they deliver on the wow factor, reaching even the hardest to connect with audiences who will automatically switch off to anything faintly programmatic.

Location – it’s a fact that handpicked sites like the Liverpool Media Wall which is bang outside Lime Street Station reaches 25 per cent of the city population per fortnight.

Technology – nowadays big screens come with all kinds of bells and whistles including full motion capability which registers a 2.5 bigger emotional impact compared with a static poster site.

Smart - and they are 100 per cent responsive to their audiences and surroundings, offering broadcast, narrowcast and hyperlocal experiences which register the happiness and mood of that location and that audience at that time.  

Scarcity – The IMAX and Piccadilly Lights are defined by their uniqueness. Unreplicated and resplendent, there’s no mistaking when you ask for either of them by their name.  

It’s fair to say that super-premium digital screens with all of the above vital statistics are now not only top of the media plan for The Forbes Top 100 most valuable brands but are opening up out of home inventory to a host of newcomers. 

Categories such as luxury goods, which wasn’t even present in out of home five years ago, is now the fastest growing as brands explore classy new spaces beyond the glossy spread.

Growth in brand count is driven by the iconic nature of digital out of home and the advantages DOOH offers with regards to quality, immediacy, location, impact and the emotional response it generates in audiences.

Add to that mix the power of big screens to amplify fame, something Ocean has also been measuring during the past 12 months.

London’s Piccadilly Lights has to be the ultimate DOOH icon, because original content served by the dynamic curved screen is actively driving user generated and news content across social media channels too. 

A recent campaign carried by the Piccadilly Lights, which is owned by Landsec, delivered 1.31 million impressions on a single day across a combination of social media and mainstream news channels.

So, coming back to the meaning of the word, iconic screens build brand fame. 

And at the moment there are very few other channels around the world that can deliver fame, value and impact on such a scale.



Richard Malton is chief marketing officer at Ocean Group

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