‘In­no­va­tions will drive spends’

Outdoor Asia - - Brand Take -

Mea­sur­ing the medium

Of course it can be mea­sured. Glob­ally there are ways to mea­sure it. But yes there has to some will­ing­ness and com­mit­ment from stake­hold­ers to put in the fi­nan­cial in­vest­ment to put the ma­trix in place. The tech­nol­ogy and tools ex­ist, so mea­sur­a­bil­ity is very much pos­si­ble. If mea­sur­a­bil­ity doesn’t hap­pen, then it is def­i­nitely go­ing to af­fect our spends. Ac­tu­ally we had to cut on our OOH spends in the last 3 years and there is ev­ery pos­si­bil­ity that we will cut it down fur­ther if we don’t see mea­sur­a­bil­ity and we don’t ex­pect some­thing more out of the medium than just fre­quency build­ing.

Per­cent­age of spend on OOH

The OOH spend varies from cir­cle to cir­cle, but on an aver­age, our cir­cle bud­get may be around 20% for out­door. But we have sep­a­rate national bud­get which doesn’t fac­tor in OOH; that is sep­a­rate. Pri­mar­ily there are two things to in­crease the bud­gets. First and fore­most is the mea­sur­a­bil­ity. We don’t have any­thing to un­der­stand what ROI we are get­ting on the spends on the out­door medium. That is the 1st step to en­sure that the amount of spend is chan­nel­iz­ing into this, which is purely as a fre­quency builder for cam­paigns that are pri­mar­ily led by other medi­ums. So OOH is treated as a sup­port medium pri­mar­ily for the vis­i­bil­ity. If the de­gree of en­gage­ment or in­no­va­tion that out­door medium of­fers in­creases then au­to­mat­i­cally more spend will start get­ting di­verted to it.

Pre­ferred out­door for­mat

Pri­mar­ily we use large for­mat out­doors like hoard­ings and we also use unipoles. Also, pri­mar­ily we try to look at ar­te­rial traf­fic, in­ter­city, ex­press ways etc in the city be­cause we treat it as a vis­i­bil­ity medium so wher­ever we get max­i­mum fre­quency build­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties we use those for­mats. Cur­rently I would say we use con­ven­tional out­door for­mats.

Fo­cus on Dig­i­tal OOH

We have been us­ing it so far in a spo­radic way. Pri­mar­ily we have been us­ing it only at places where there is a cap­tive au­di­ence -- like cor­po­rate parks, gyms etc. It varies on a cam­paign to cam­paign ba­sis. The rea­son be­hind this is that dig­i­tal is noth­ing but a TV show­ing a TV com­mer­cial, there is no in­ter­ac­tiv­ity and en­gage­ment and un­til that comes in, it doesn’t be­come a pri­mary at­trac­tive medium for us. Cur­rently we have in­cluded it as a part of me­dia plan and spo­rad­i­cally use it dur­ing big cam­paigns only to in­crease fre­quency build­ing. Tech­nolo­gies ex­ist to make dig­i­tal OOH a lot more en­gag­ing and in­ter­ac­tive for the con­sumer. If th­ese things start com­ing into play then we will go for dig­i­tal OOH.

Creative agen­cies –Their fo­cus or the lack of it on OOH & their cre­ativ­ity

It is largely true that creative agen­cies lack in giv­ing equal pref­er­ence to OOH medium as com­pared to other medi­ums apart from a few ex­am­ples that we get from some award win­ning work. But on a day to day ba­sis, OOH medium is not treated as a pri­mary ex­pres­sion of cre­ativ­ity. I guess this will change when more tech­nolo­gies and in­no­va­tions will start get­ting in­te­grated into it. Creative peo­ple es­sen­tially look out for the medi­ums which can ex­press the idea best. To­day a large num­ber of them would ei­ther go for TV or on­line. But it is a fact that we are see­ing a lot of ex­am­ples from all parts of the world of some fan­tas­tic in­no­va­tions, in­ter­ac­tions and en­gage­ments that out­door and am­bi­ent me­dia of­fers. I am sure once the tech­nolo­gies come in, the creative peo­ple will also start pay­ing a lot more fo­cus and at­ten­tion to this medium. The medium has to be avail­able, no­body needs to do any­thing to get their at­ten­tion. I can’t force my creative agen­cies to do some­thing they don’t want to do and nei­ther can they force me to do some­thing that I don’t want to do. If there are com­pet­ing 4-5 primer medi­ums in the coun­try avail­able, the nat­u­ral law of the jun­gle will say that creative peo­ple will put en­er­gies into a medium which of­fers them the best op­por­tu­ni­ties to ex­press their ideas and if OOH be­comes that medium then au­to­mat­i­cally they will grav­i­tate there. The medium should have the ca­pa­bil­ity and a flat and static medium has a very limited ca­pa­bil­ity to ex­press the idea.

Credit is­sues faced by me­dia own­ers

In our case we never had any is­sues in terms of delays in pay­ments. What does tend to hap­pen is that there is not enough trans­parency in eval­u­a­tion and the process of in­voice, billing and mea­sur­a­bil­ity, there­fore those is­sues are def­i­nitely there, but for us as a client there is no dif­fer­ence be­tween TV, OOH, Print, Ra­dio and Dig­i­tal. They are all paid and it is not that OOH me­dia own­ers face any­thing dif­fer­ent from what any other me­dia owner faces.

Amitesh Rao Di­rec­tor – Brand & Me­dia MTS In­dia

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