Page 12 - AdNews Magazine Jan-Feb 2021
P. 12

Audiences and engagement all of a sudden became more impor- tant in a channel when it was always assumed.
“Some clients and agencies’ knee jerk reactions were to pull spend, but there were pockets of gold if you could find them,” they say. “Some taking advantage of the unprecedented lack of demand to take over entire networks, sending support to different states through their campaigns.”
While 2020 was hard, Thomas and Whall believe this helped accelerate the industry and OOH is going to ride the benefits.
“The way agencies use data to analyse the audience fluctua- tions. During 2020 we also saw the rise of programmatic OOH, no longer just a concept but most of our clients leaning into this new technology,” they say.
“Allowing us to use publisher, client or agency data sets to buy OOH in real-time. Upweight, down weight, cancel, pause, stop, start, continue all at the hands of the client and agency. A BIG change for a channel that used to have a four week print- ing lead time.
“The channel itself has added new strings to its bow, it can now be reactive, clients can use first- party data to target audiences ... we can get real-time reporting.
“2020 will go down as the
“ ... we will see
an explosion in appreciation for the important role OOH can play at all stages in the marketing funnel.”
Charmaine Moldrich, OMA
  biggest and most revolutionary year for OOH, completely changing the way agencies and clients think about it in under 12 months.”
The pandemic also sparked a clean out.
At oOh!media, the Australian company did a $167 million capital raising on the ASX to strengthen its balance sheet. And at the same time it found costs of between $20 million and $30 million to cut.
Melbourne-based Tim Murphy took on the role of chief sales officer at oOh!media in April, the low point in the gloom of the pandemic.
“I’m still building relationships with people, particularly in Sydney,” he says. “They’re much stronger today than they were at the start of the year, despite not much being done face to face.”
He tried to inject fun, scheduling virtual meetings with the team, not about work, to chat.
“As we’ve navigated through this pandemic there’s been no rulebook, no guide, nothing to work off,” says Murphy. “This really sparked an entrepreneurial spirit with our team to bring solutions to the table and share ideas, which is quite symbolic of how the business was formed, but also instilled a lot of confidence in our people.”
While lockdowns put a stop to commutes, local traffic continued, creating suburban pockets.
Shopper Media says foot traffic suddenly increased at local shopping centres in the initial stages of COVID, surpassing Christmas crowds. Dwell times rose by 11% and repeat visitation by 8%.
By April, foot traffic started to soften in line with the changing social guidelines. A May Shopper Survey of 7,698 Australians revealed that 54% experienced queuing before entering the supermarket but they were willing to wait to get what they needed. Local shopping centres were essential hubs for Australian families.

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