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What do OOH strategists and media owners need to understand about digital in order to successfully leverage the digital and OOH channels together?

Meghan Ferguson

Digital Media – Independent Contractor 

Meghan Ferguson

Meghan Ferguson

28 August . 2 min read . Opinion

(Credit: Boo! Media)

The South African media landscape is amid a seismic shift. As consumers become increasingly connected, the boundaries between digital and traditional Out-of-Home (OOH) advertising are blurring. To create impactful campaigns in this evolving market, OOH strategists and media owners need to harness the synergy between Mobile OOH, Social Media, and Digital OOH (DOOH).

The Changing Media Landscape in South Africa:

South Africa has experienced rapid growth in internet connectivity, smartphone usage, and social media adoption. With the proliferation of mobile devices, consumers are constantly connected, and their digital behaviors offer a wealth of data.

Traditional OOH, on the other hand, such as billboards and posters, has remained a dominant medium, particularly in metropolitan regions like Johannesburg and Cape Town. However, the line between traditional OOH and its digital counterpart, DOOH, is gradually fading.

Technological Changes:

  1. Interactive Billboards: DOOH is no longer just about static ads. With interactive billboards, consumers can engage directly with the advertisement, fostering deeper connections.
  2. Geo-targeting and Programmatic Buying: The rise of programmatic ad buying in the DOOH space allows advertisers to target specific audiences based on real-time data.
  3. Augmented Reality (AR) in OOH: AR-enabled billboards or posters can offer interactive experiences when scanned with a mobile device, linking the physical and digital realms seamlessly.

The Role of Data:

Digital media, especially social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, capture enormous amounts of user data – from demographics to preferences and online behaviors. Here’s how this data can inform DOOH and OOH strategies:

  1. Audience Profiling: Understand who your target audience is, what they like, where they spend time, and when they’re most active. This can inform the placement and timing of OOH and DOOH ads.
  2. Behavioral Insights: Digital footprints give insights into consumer behaviors and preferences. By analyzing these patterns, advertisers can craft more compelling and personalized ad messages.
  3. Real-time Feedback Loop: Social media provides immediate feedback. By monitoring reactions to OOH and DOOH campaigns on social platforms, advertisers can adapt their strategies in real-time.

Synergizing Mobile OOH, Social Media, and DOOH:

  1. Cross-Platform Campaigns: Initiate a campaign on social media, extend its narrative on DOOH and encourage mobile interaction for a holistic experience. For instance, use a trending hashtag from a social media campaign on a digital billboard and prompt users to engage using their mobile devices.
  2. Location-based Strategies: Use mobile data to understand where your audience is and serve them relevant DOOH ads in those locations.
  3. Interactive Campaigns: Encourage users to share their DOOH interactions on their social media profiles, creating a buzz and reaching a wider audience.

For OOH strategists and media owners in South Africa, understanding the symbiotic relationship between Mobile OOH, Social Media, and DOOH is critical. By tapping into the vast reserves of digital data and leveraging the interactive capabilities of modern technologies, they can craft compelling campaigns that resonate deeply with the South African audience, bridging the gap between the digital and physical realms.

Meghan Ferguson, based in Cape Town, has dedicated over a decade to understanding and navigating the intricacies of digital media marketing. Her journey has led her to work alongside respected agencies such as Publicis and Dentsu.

Meghan’s focus has consistently been on digital performance, guided by an interest in data and its implications. Across various digital media platforms, she seeks to assist businesses in realizing their potential and achieving their goals.