27 Sep 11
Standing out from the crowd
by Greg Russell, Trainee Planner/Buyer
A recent study from the Outdoor Media Centre has found that 88% of people see outdoor ads in the run up to shopping, and 72% of shoppers can be swayed towards a product through exposure to outdoor advertising. While you might expect them to say this, it does indicate the effectiveness of outdoor ads as an influencer in the decision making process and highlights why this platform should be given serious consideration when targeting shoppers.
However, it’s not just a case of throwing up any old poster and hoping for the best. The ad itself has to be strong enough to cause the consumer to pause, take a second look, and process the message that is displayed. Many outdoor ads are only viewed for a couple of seconds as people commute through a city centre or drive past a billboard on the side of a road. Therefore the artwork and execution must be striking in order to achieve brand or product recognition.
To illustrate this point it’s useful to look at an example. Newcastle Brown Ale erected a billboard in San Diego which consisted of bottle caps from Newcastle Brown Ale bottles. During the day they appear to be placed in a purely random formation but at night shadows reveal a striking image of a figure reaching for a glass of Newcastle Brown. This represents the brand’s tag line “The Lighter Side of Dark”. Not only does the ad gain the attention of passer’s by but the billboard, in the Gaslamp district of San Diego which has a large amount of bars and restaurants, is also placed in a relevant location.
From the results of the Outdoor Media Centre it appears that outdoor advertising is a strong option when planning shopper-focused campaigns. However, as illustrated by the Newcastle Brown Ale example, in order to take full advantage of the medium there needs to be a creative and innovative approach in the design of the display and a consideration of which location is most relevant to the target audience.