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Technology Brings New Life To The Out Of Home Industry

Media Buying by Jessica Chappell

Out-of-home advertising is the world’s oldest form of advertising, and until recently hasn’t become nearly as easy to implement well as other ad forms. This traditionally manual medium has required knowing the owner of the sign, working out an agreement, printing the ad, and having it installed. If you need to change your creative, you’ll have to redesign, reprint, and reinstall.

But the conversion of more and more out-of-home advertising from static boards into digital displays is transforming the medium for the better. And from that digital transformation comes the ability to buy more and more out-of-home advertising programmatically, just has been done for years with traditional digital and mobile advertising.

Local billboard providers, as well as large national outdoor networks, are increasingly listing their inventory within exchanges to sell their inventory more efficiently. Now sold alongside digital display ads, out-of-home ad space is becoming much easier and more cost-effective for the advertiser to reach their targets. 

The advantage for the advertiser is that they are getting greater targeted reach and additional frequency through access to many more outdoor formats. Incorporating gyms, transportation, and theaters into the ad mix provides marketers with more efficient way to be in front of their potential buyers. 

Advertisers need to be aware of certain things before jumping into programmatic buying of out-of-home. First, be aware of the terms of your agreement with the seller. Some trade desks will agree to sell you a certain size audience. But after saturating the available out-of-home ad space for that particular audience, they will roll that remaining audience into digital or mobile impressions. 

Most will be transparent about their methodology, but the advertiser may not know the full extent of that roll-over until the end of their campaign. Get a clear look at their publisher list to see where you are truly buying ads. 

Programmatic out-of-home buying is the future of advertising. The world’s oldest ad medium may soon become the most rich with possibilities.

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