OOH + mobile panel discussion

To talk about the convergence of out-of-home media with mobile advertising, we gathered 40-50 leading marketing professionals in the Dallas area for a marketing session and interactive cocktail experience.

We also gathered the brightest out-of-home media, digital media and marketing agency representatives to serve on our expert panel:

Blaise D’Sylva, VP Media, Dr. Pepper Snapple Group
Alex Kim, CPO, Blue Bite
Brandon Cason, CMO, Waterloo Sparkling Water
Stephen Freitas, CMO, OAAA
Sarah Hunt, Director of Marketing, MetroPCS
Jaquie Hoyos, Media Head, The Richards Group

Here’s what we learned!





Convergence of Out-of-Home and Mobile Media: Why It Works

“The thing that’s really interesting about that dynamic when you talk about out-of-home and online mobile is that it’s a perfect complement,” said OAAA’s Stephen Freitas during the session. Out-of-home media works at the top of the funnel to build brand awareness, whereas mobile advertising performs really well at the bottom of the funnel.

For Brandon Cason of Waterloo, it’s about the shotgun method and the sniper rifle method. Out-of-home offers a broad reach, reaching everyone in a market. Whereas digital allows him to aim messages at precise audiences or segments.

“The one thing about the mobile platform is it’s a great transactional medium. It’s a great medium for one-to-one personal dynamics,” Freitas continues. “But it’s not necessarily the best advertising medium. […] Out-of-home can make people aware and drive people to those mobile sites.”

Freitas explained that out-of-home media used to chase TV advertising as the gold standard. At the turn of the century, that changed, and now everyone is chasing digital. Brands want the one-to-one conversations digital can offer.

Instead of chasing digital, we’ve learned that collaborating with digital makes both channels stronger. We can use digital data to inform on out-of-home placements. And we can attribute the out-of-home message to a store visit. While we’re still in the early stages of this convergence, we’re seeing results.

Click-through rates on digital are exponentially higher when paired with an out-of-home campaign.

“The reason why we’re achieving click-through rates of .9 or 1.2 is because we take that specific location and optimize it every day,” explains Blue Bite’s Alex Kim. (Click to Tweet!) “I have to take a small out-of-home budget and make it work as hard as it can. Because it’s so location-specific, we have the opportunity to do that.”

Kim suggests to capitalize on the recency of seeing an out-of-home ad by sending a digital message to finish telling the story.

“We can now drive that awareness to behavior, and reinforce it with mobile advertising,” agrees Freitas. “And that’s the real opportunity.”

Whereas digital can be targeted, it doesn’t leave a permanent impact.

“There’s still something to be said about someone physically seeing an ad and feeling good about it,” said Blaise D’Slyva, VP Media at Dr. Pepper Snapple Group. (Click to Tweet!)





The Changing Consumer and Media Landscape

“Millennials are walking, talking bullshit detectors,” Kim chuckled. “When we talk about Gen Z, they’re even bigger bullshit detectors.”

So not only are we in an era of channel proliferation and shrinking attention spans, but consumers are more savvy than ever before. They know they’re being marketed to, and brands need to step up and stand out.

“It’s about being relevant,” added Freitas.

Yet reaching consumers – who use three to five screens at a time – is challenging.

“We think about what’s the best way to tell the entire story,” said MetroPCS’s Sarah Hunt. “It’s getting harder and harder to tell your brand message on one small piece of real estate. Having multiple screens gives us an opportunity to, one, make sure we’re giving you the right message but also to tell our story in a bigger, wider way.” (Click to Tweet!)

No consumer asks for advertising.

“Advertising is interruption. We spend $200 billion in this country on advertising. It’s still about interruption,” said D’Sylva. “How I need to think about this is, ‘How do I do interruption with consent?'” (Click to Tweet!)

D’Sylva challenged the room to let go of impressions. Instead of thinking about attention-based marketing, consider intention-based marketing. It got us thinking about what real outcomes we’d like to see from our advertising. Once we have someone’s attention, then what? What value can we provide?

We grew up expecting to see commercials during TV shows or hearing radio spots in between our favorite songs. Digital media has changed that, but there’s still a duty for brands to place ads responsibly. Choose to deliver your message in places and in ways that consumers expect to see ads in the natural consumer world.

The established brands on our panel tend to be more cognizant of placement. They may not want to force someone to watch a five-second pre-roll video. Yet, the challenger brands on our panel who need to increase brand awareness leverage the opportunity digital provides to launch video ads at scale and on a smaller budget.

It’s finding the right balance for your brand. Take risks to accomplish your goals, but don’t shoot yourself in the foot. There are many channels and placement options, so be deliberate about what you choose.

Brands which rely on video have TV, online video, video on demand, social media, pre-roll and in-line video ads as options. But they’re all just different ways to distribute video.

It’s about telling your story.

“You have to be super focused on what the message is for the right platform and understanding your audience,” said Jaquie Hoyos of The Richards Group. (Click to Tweet!)

“Marketing speak is the enemy,” said Cason. If you can mix-and-match logos and headlines, you’re not writing meaningful enough copy. That’s the creative challenge. What truly makes your brand, your product, your story different?

What is really going to make someone – who’s buying water or who’s buying cell service – make the purchase?

“Great creative, or a great creative idea, will always win out,” said D’Sylva. (Click to Tweet!)

We asked the panel about keeping track of competitors. Most agreed that they paid attention to trends in the industry and knew what their competitors were doing…but stayed focused on their own strategies.

“Media choices should never be determined by what our competitor does,” said Kim. (Click to Tweet!)





Bringing OOH + Mobile Planners Together

One obstacle we experience at times is making sure everyone on the out-of-home media team and everyone on the digital team are on the same page. Many times, either at the corporate level or at the agency level, planning is done separately for the two channels rather than concurrently. There are out-of-home planners and digital planners.

Hunt discussed how MetroPCS has been working to consolidate staff and leadership between the corporate and agency teams in order to streamline their efforts and create synergy.

“Think about the strategy as a holistic human strategy that’s relate-able,” said Hoyos. “If I’m telling someone who’s specifically executing out-of-home and then someone who’s specifically executing digital, they’re still going to be able to relate to the overall strategy. They’re seeing how everything’s working together.”

It’s important to bring everyone to the table during the strategy phase.

“You first have to understand the consumer,” Hoyos continued. “We’re not just adding on more media. I think we now say, ‘Let’s be choiceful.’ Let’s be really clear on what we want to do, how we want to use it, and those are the integrations, I think, that are the most powerful.” (Click to Tweet!)





New Media Measurement Models

In the traditional marketing models, according to Freitas, out-of-home sometimes performed poorly. Brands were measuring a 20-market out-of-home buy against a 200-DMA national TV buy. His recommendation is to parcel out the models more granularly.

Hoyos agreed, saying that newer models are being built to reflect geography and also the relationships between media.

When planning integrated campaigns, it’s important to find ways to measure the integrated channels.

Not everyone on the panel measured everything. It’s difficult to measure the psychological side of the consumer. At the end of the day, if sales are going up and everyone is happy, that’s a measurement you can’t ignore.

However, the convergence of out-of-home and mobile does provide additional data never before accessible to out-of-home. Use this data to inform your next out-of-home campaign.

As the OOH + mobile convergence grows and evolves, let’s continue to have open communication and share our stories with each other!

For the full hour-long panelist discussion, please view or listen to our video of the event: