Geopath Analysis Pinpoints Optimal OOH Inventory for Last-Minute Holiday Ad Buys

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With the holiday season coming in tandem with a potential recession this year, ad budgets are getting tight. At the same time, expectations for ROI on digital ad buys have never been greater. Agencies are always faced with uncompromising clients, but especially this season, the demands are clear: ads need to perform, or else.

A new market analysis of out-of-home (OOH) inventory conducted by Geopath, a not-for-profit organization that provides industry-standard audience metrics for OOH advertising, audits inventory in 10 DMAs, or designated market areas, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas-Fort Worth, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Houston, Atlanta, Washington, D.C. and Boston. Geopath was able to identify inventory for reaching key gift-buying audience segments in each market area, which could prove useful to advertisers as they look to find the optimal OOH inventory for their last-minute holiday advertising buys.

“We hope this analysis can help advertisers find the audiences and impressions they need and more readily integrate OOH into their cross-platform mix during these last few weeks of the holiday season,” says Scott Fiaschetti, executive vice president of marketing at Geopath.

As the OOH advertising industry continues to push past the pandemic, and be featured more prominently in omnichannel budgets, Fiaschetti says Geopath’s analysis makes clear that OOH is positioned to be a cornerstone of top brands’ strategies.

“Right now, OOH represents 4% of advertising budgets, but it’s expected to grow by 9% over the next five years versus just 5% for other media. Why? As consumers’ media consumption becomes more fragmented, OOH continues to be a reliable medium to reach customers en masse,” Fiaschetti says. “It can deliver strong ROI for brands wanting to reach audiences and maximize advertising dollars.”

OOH is now one of the fastest growing ad channels, up 15% in the third-quarter year-over-year, according to SMI. Fiaschetti says marketers looking to get greater return on ad spend (ROAS) through visibility are placing ad buys closer to the point of purchase — something OOH, and especially place-based OOH media, delivers exceptionally well.

“One thing that we know in OOH, but is always nice to see supported by the data, is the potential of OOH media to reach consumers along their entire journey. It can reach them as they move around a market during their daily activities, when they are on the way to major shopping areas, and even when they are on-site in retail locations and other venues. OOH can help brands communicate their message all the way up to the point of purchase,” Fiaschetti says. “Maybe it’s because of my kids, but one finding that stood out for me was that in every market we analyzed, the OOH inventory Geopath audits over-indexed for reaching those in the market for video game systems. It is a great example of how OOH can reach both broad and niche audiences in the same market.”

The Last-Minute Holiday Push

Belt tightening is happening across the board. According to an October survey by Advertiser Perceptions, more than one-third (35%) of advertisers had cut back on 2022 ad spend because of economic forces. Of that group, 31% pulled back on traditional OOH investments and 26% pulled back on social media spend.

With just weeks to go before Christmas, and even less time before the critical holiday shipping deadlines, the clock is ticking for retail brands. Fiaschetti says brands still have time to take advantage of the data from Geopath’s market analysis, specifically when it comes to finding the audiences and impressions they need, and integrating OOH into their cross-platform mix during these last few weeks of the holiday season.

“The ability to identify OOH inventory that is efficient in reaching core audiences provides an effective way for marketers to take advantage of consumers’ increased mobility,” Fiaschetti says. “Paired with Geopath’s advanced measurement capabilities, marketers can deliver targeted messages to their audiences close to the point of purchase.”

Stephanie Miles is a journalist who covers personal finance, technology, and real estate. As Street Fight’s senior editor, she is particularly interested in how local merchants and national brands are utilizing hyperlocal technology to reach consumers. She has written for FHM, the Daily News, Working World, Gawker, Cityfile, and Recessionwire.
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