« Back to the Blog

A Look Ahead for Out-of-Home Advertising

Outdoor advertising is one of those industries that one could say never changes, or is constantly changing. On one hand, it is always the same. Local business is the biggest chunk of revenue for us. Static billboards are still just as impactful today as they ever were. They still break through the clutter by demanding the attention of a captive audience. The out of home medium is still one of the most cost effective ways to reach your target audience.

On the other hand, the industry has seemed to have changed quite a bit in the last few years. Some of the biggest industry transformations have been measurement, technology, and creative elements allowing for customer interaction. When looking ahead at what the industry has to look forward to in 2012, one thing is certain – there will be some trends to watch.


The implementation of EyesOn for audience measurement has been a slow adoption, but will probably have more buy-in this year as more media companies provide the EyesOn numbers. We will have to see if this will be the year agencies embrace the methodology.


The explosion of digital products and creative technologies recently available has increased the targetability of out of home media. A medium that has always been used to reach the masses can now narrowcast and communicate more intimately with the consumer. This is evident with the new ‘€œwisdom of the crowd’€ applications. Retailers have started using digital billboards, shelters and placed-based media to sell popular items, as well as items that aren’t leaving the shelves. Stores can now communicate items and pricing with the public based on the inventory availability.

Near-field Communication (NFC) is another technology to watch this year. NFC allows for the transfer of data between compatible devices simply by placing them near each other. This is much more convenient than QR Code campaigns because the consumer doesn’t have to take an action to enable the technology. The only drawback is the production cost of the smart posters. As the number of consumers using smartphones increases, these technologies will be more relevant to consumers.

Creative Elements

There will be an increased use of interactive creative elements. Social media capabilities will be a big one to watch as more businesses are using Facebook. The content of the advertising messages will be more consumer-driven. Again, with the growth of smart phone use and availability of the social media apps, more brands will integrate the social media aspect into their campaigns.


Despite the number of new advertisers using out of home, the top ten categories seem to stay the same. You might see political come and go, depending on the year.

But, last year, according to OAAA, we saw the Schools, Camps and Seminars move into the top ten categories, with an increase in out of home spending of 22%! Maybe this will be the year we will see more categories rise to the top.

Like This Article? Share It!

Got something to say? Go for it!

You must be logged in to post a comment.