What: We talked to Valentín Bueno, CEO at Latcom, about why out-of-home advertising is growing more than any other advertising media.
Why it matters: Out-of-home advertising has always been important, but technological advancement creates more and better opportunities for engaging consumers, which means the industry needs to adapt just as other advertising media.
According to Magna Global’s 2017 Media Economy Report, out-of-home advertising attracts 6% of advertising spending globally. It is the only traditional medium that has been growing ad sales consistently over the last 10 years, and this is expected to continue. Predictions indicate OOH will grow by 4% per year in the next five years to reach US $33 billion by 2021.
Consumers spend 70% of their time out of home, which translates into endless possibilities to reach their attention. Valentín Bueno, CEO of Latcom, knows just how to mix all those possibilities in an appropriate way depending on consumer, market, and product, and he shared with us a few key insights for successful OOH advertising.
The Technological Revolution Boosts OOH
Magna’s Global Report shows that although digital is only 5% of the global inventory, it already accounts for 14% of advertising revenues. In fact, DOOH already accounts for 22% of revenue in some markets like the UK and the global share is predicted to grow to 24% by 2021. For Valentín Bueno, the best way to describe how digital has influenced the growth of OOH is by calling it “an explosion, it’s the best term we can use. It was an explosion that boosted communication among consumers. In the last decade, digital technology, LED technology, interactivity, connectivity… it all advanced communication through out-of-home media.” As he points out, it is the only conventional media that has grown, while all the others have fallen. “It has also become the ideal complement of the digital world, and this combination increases the media’s relevance.”
“OOH will go on growing because it’s the only system that allows you to go outside to segment consumers,” declares Bueno when asked about the future of the industry. “People have less and less time for conventional media… They consume only what they need in terms of information and media, and out-of-home advertising puts you right in front of the consumer. This will never change; as long as the media allows us to find consumers where they are, OOH will keep on growing.”
Consumers Engage Democratically with OOH Media
As Valentín Bueno explains, in OOH advertising there is a combination that needs to be well planned in order to work. “Our system is the only one that works in the exact opposite way as other systems,” he says. “People consume this media because they wish to do so; it’s amazing, it’s a combination between imposition and democracy because consumers look at it only if they want to.” It is just as he explains: no one is obligated to look at a billboard, but you look at it when it calls your attention with the right message. “Remembrance is directly related to design, the elements should be appropriate in terms of aesthetics, you should have the right images and the right text.”
[OOH] advertising is a combination between imposition and democracy.
Beware: Challenges Ahead
As Bueno explains, the main challenge of OOH advertising is and always be “to provide the right mix of graphics through the right media.” In other words, if what you show is well-planned and where you show it makes sense with the message, the “explosion” takes place. However, the industry’s challenges are more related to growth, to consolidating the media as an important system and to “going beyond global 5% participation, and going back to the historical 20%.” The way to do this, as he explains, is “by investing in research, and investing in evolving through digital platforms.”
“We at Latcom spend 24 hours a day trying to understand consumers’ needs and finding out how to do alchemy with the different available media within each market. We are at an advantage there, and we want to continue interpreting consumers’ habits in such a way that affects those consumers to align them with the message we’re sending.”
Successful OOH Advertising in a Nutshell
“The first step is understanding what your consumers are doing,” asserts Bueno. “This is a system that allows you to go find your consumers, so you have to find them first. Then, you need to take consuming and circulation habits and turn them into the best possible mix of media. Finally, you need striking creativity that makes consumers democratically choose to look at your ad.” In a world where media are increasingly more fragmented than before and people can choose what and when to consume content, you can’t launch a campaign without understanding perfectly each media and consumer, and you can’t dream of it being successful if it’s not appropriately designed. Out-of-home ads are there whether consumers want them or not, so make sure they choose to look at them when they’re facing yours.