Out-of-home (OOH) media has regained its stature entering 2023. After a pandemic caused shutdowns around the world in 2020, people began leaving their homes more often in 2021. In 2022, that trend increased substantially. Now, most statistics regarding people leaving their homes are near pre-pandemic levels.
In some cases, the number of people leaving their homes has overwhelmed the system. Airports have seen excessive lines of passengers waiting to fly domestically and internationally. This has caused numerous problems for airlines trying to satisfy the pent-up demand. Popular tourist destinations and theme parks have also struggled to keep up with the surge of people traveling again.
Aside from traveling, other activities outside the house have recovered near 2019 levels. Youth sports leagues have returned. Major sporting events and concerts are selling out again. Even if people are working from home occasionally, they are still commuting to work a few days each week. After work, they are joining friends and colleagues for happy hour or dinner at a restaurant.
People are not just leaving their homes again. They are going out with a consumer’s mindset to spend money and enjoy their time. How can businesses or companies effectively reach these consumers while they are out and about? Let’s examine five types of OOH media.
1. Newsrack Advertising
Newsrack advertising has been around for a long time. Regardless of what you think about the newspaper industry, newsrack advertising is not going away any time soon. These locations are in high-traffic areas in highly populated places. Because of this, newsrack advertising reaches many people for a relatively low cost. Not only does a company’s message reach everyone walking by, but it usually faces the street to gain impressions on people driving past.
This form of OOH media typically maintains a static image in the same spot for a long time. This ensures sustained daily impressions on a large number of people to increase brand awareness. It can also provide the added perception of being a company engaged locally since the products at newsracks are often centered around the community.
Billboards have a long track record as a way to reach a mass audience. Typically located in highly visible areas with lots of people, billboards can feature a wide range of sizes, shapes, and styles. Digital billboards continue to increase as technology makes them more prevalent and costs begin to come down.
Billboards provide the benefit of consistent messaging to a large audience. They prominently display a company’s image to anyone within sight. Digital billboards create the extra benefit of companies changing their message in real time. Some companies run different advertisements based on that day’s weather, and others feature countdown clocks that tick toward a big event they are promoting.
3. Street Furniture
Street furniture encompasses many objects. These can include bus stops, park benches, or trash cans. Similar to newsrack advertising, this OOH media can make consistent daily impressions on a large number of people. In the same vein, it also gives a local feel to the company because the advertisement is positioned in a place where people think of public services.
Speaking of bus stops, one extremely popular type of OOH media is advertising on the buses themselves. Companies can place a poster-style ad on the side or the back of a bus depending on the local regulations. Businesses striving for a flashier statement can purchase a wrap that goes around the entire bus. This has the effect of a giant moving billboard visible in the most populated places in the city. Taxi cabs and subways can accomplish this as well.
Companies with a specific demographic in mind often place ads at locations where that demographic is likely to be. For example, a business may want to reach teenagers or younger adults by purchasing posters at a mall. Advertisements at a movie theater can be another effective strategy if a company knows its target demographic is likely to flock to a certain new release. Other location-based OOH media might include grocery store shopping carts, sports venues, or college campuses.
Out-of-home media has re-emerged as a strategic marketing tool now that people are routinely leaving their homes again. While there are countless types of OOH media, we highlighted five that have stood the test of time and continue to be successful entering 2023. Newsrack advertising and billboards have well-established histories of success. Street furniture, transit media, and location-based ads also offer many benefits depending on the company’s desires.