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Is The Programmatic Digital Out of Home Gravy Being Thinned Down Too Much?

Terry Paterson

Head of Digital/Media Sales

Epic Outdoor

Terry Paterson

Terry Paterson

26 September . 2 min read . Opinion

(Credit: Epic Outdoor)

Programmatic Digital Out of Home (pDOOH) represents a dynamic shift in delivering content to the most relevant audience, precisely when it matters most. It is an exciting time to be a part of this evolving landscape. We’re finally witnessing the fruits of essential reporting and data feedback, which the Out of Home (OOH) industry desperately needed to gauge the effectiveness of One-to-Many OOH campaigns.

Nevertheless, there’s been a growing debate about the effectiveness of pDOOH, leading us to ask: Is pDOOH being diluted to the point of ineffectiveness, or as I like to call it, “Are we serving our gravy too thin?”

To explain pDOOH to my peers, I often say, “It’s everything Digital is, but not quite.” Comparing it to traditional digital campaigns is like comparing apples to oranges, as pDOOH offers unique insights and caters to different consumer behaviours. pDOOH’ s secret sauce lies in its ability to connect with a wide audience at the right moment, in contrast to traditional digital campaigns, which focus on one-to-one engagement.

In our weekly discussions with experts in the media industry, we often find ourselves circling back to a common theme: perceived underperformance and inadequate reporting. This raises the question: Are we at risk of spreading our campaigns too thin across too many locations resulting in too few flighting’s, all in our quest for maximum performance, however resulting in the dilution of the campaigns’ impact?

(Credit: Epic Outdoor)

We must remember that we are operating in the OOH realm, and core OOH principles still apply. The advantage of pDOOH doesn’t stem from buying specific locations but rather from targeting audiences around key locations across a broader geographic range, making better use of our budgets. However, this doesn’t mean we should indiscriminately buy every available screen on the market. Instead, we should strategically focus on areas that align with our campaign objectives, using planning tools to ensure optimal delivery and relevance to our audience during their daily journeys.

Various planning tools are at our disposal, but it’s crucial to take the time to focus, align, and upskill our industry to ensure more targeted campaigns. Otherwise, we risk bombarding the same three people with the same ad at a single intersection.

In conclusion, how can we ensure that our efforts do not go to waste?

We must emphasize effective planning, segmenting our audience, creating controlled environments, and building custom networks, all while carefully managing our budgets. By following these steps, we can create a recipe for success, ensure higher concentration and better performance. The result – our ‘gravy’ sticks to the spoon.

The Head of Digital for Epic Outdoor – a niche Out of Home Media Owner, Large Impact platforms and high visibility LED screens. 
 
As the Head of Digital, combined with 13 years in the Media Game, 6 of which passionately pursuing Digital Out of Home – leading and aligning Epic Outdoor alongside his team, to be a tech lead solutions based DOOH media owner in this modern day and age.