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OOH growth to ride on technological advances

























MUMBAI: From pasteless posters, energy-saving bulbs, digital billboards to the fast-improving audience measurement techniques, the out-of-home (OOH) industry is poised to be the most vibrant industry in the next decade.


Speakers at the session entitled "It‘s Drive Time for OOH" were unanimous with regard to the potential of OOH. They also agreed that the category‘s continued strength owes to the explosive technological advancement, digital outdoor media proliferation and fragmentation of other mass media.



In his presentation, OOH veteran and UK‘s Outdoor Advertising Industry Advisor Dennis Sullivan defined OOH as the most powerful mode of communication. "It‘s the most creative medium because since it doesn‘t target a specific audience – in fact, it targets everyone – it can easily evoke emotions, and make you smile and sometimes cry."



Sullivan also mentioned that globally OOH has $35 billion share in advertising, and added that some of the principal factors driving the growth of OOH are as follows: change in lifestyle; ownership consolidation (car has become the new lounge for families, and TV audience has declined); investment; audience measurement, etc.


"60 per cent of the world will live in cities by 2030 and this augurs well for the OOH industry since OOH is definitely an out-and-out urban medium of communication," said Sullivan.



To give an Indian dimension to the forum agenda, Future Media CEO Partho Dasgupta discussed the changing face of the Indian consumer. "The Indian consumer is changing in his/her attitude to the market. For example, the number of financially independent women is increasing, and in tune with urbanization, we have now a credit society from the traditional savings society."



"The media is also rising, and this is exemplified by the fact that almost very month a new channel is launching. Moreover, the growth of modern trade is influencing the Indian consumer, and this has led to the proliferation of screens in particular and OOH in general," explained Dasgupta.


Lehman Brothers SVP David Dorfman, who is also a successful OOH practitioner, touched on the digital media in the OOH advertising industry. According to Dorfman, "Digital technology is impacting ‘outdoor.‘ And since outdoor is local, people are more receptive when it comes to OOH advertising."



To explain the power of OOH, Dorfman said that it offers ‘face-to-face‘ impact (airport advertising, mall displays, transit and kiosks, etc.) and maintained that digital advertising will change the way people perceive outdoor advertising.

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