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How Will Google’s Digital OOH Ads Announcement Impact Advertisers?

September 14, 2022
Doug Luers
Doug Luers
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Digital out-of-home (OOH) ads aren’t new, but they are regaining popularity as the world emerges from the pandemic. Perfect timing for Google’s announcement of its entrance into the space, making digital out-of-home ads available to all Display & Video 360 users. 

Unlike traditional billboards, with digital OOH ads, advertisers pay to have their ads shown in multiple locations at different times, offering brands the ability to engage shoppers when they are making key decisions. Being able to connect with customers when they are shopping at their favorite mall, or at the grocery store during dinnertime offers a more relevant experience for the customer and gives marketers the ability to plan and optimize all digital channels in one place, with the efficiency of programmatic technology. 

Adding digital out-of-home advertising to Google’s Display & Video 360 ad planning tool makes it easier for marketers to create multi-platform, holistically-measured campaigns within its ecosystem. Now through DV360, instead of paying to have one ad shown in a single location, you can elect to have multiple ads shown at specific times in multiple locations, which is particularly valuable for brands with global footprints.

What do OOH Ads Mean for the Advertising Industry?

There’s no doubt this announcement moves our industry forward, making digital out-of-home more accessible to advertisers of all kinds. Early tests with ASOS, a major online retailer, proved successful, generating brand awareness and increasing foot traffic to nearby stores. After conducting an experiment to measure the impact of digital out-of-home, the ASOS team discovered a 14% increase in brand awareness and a 22% increase in brand consideration.

Typically, advertisers manage campaigns at scale across multiple channels by partnering with DSPs (demand-side platforms) to connect to ad exchanges like Hivestack, Magnite, VIOOH, and more. And while Google has partnered with many of those same exchanges to offer advertisers access to similar inventory from Clear Channel Outdoor, JCDecaux, Lamar, and others, it remains to be seen whether partners have offered Google access to similar inventory or whether availability is remnant of what others haven’t sold. 

What Impact Do OOH Ads Have on Advertisers? 

  • Buying digital out-of-home: Advertisers looking to get started with Display & Video 360 digital OOH have two options: negotiating offline directly with the seller, or buying inventory via the Marketplace. If negotiating offline, you’ll be able to import the deal into your Display & Video 360 account using the deal or order ID. Buying directly from the Marketplace allows advertisers to explore available inventory and submit a request for proposal (RFP) to one or multiple publishers. 
  • Context over personalization: Digital OOH ads don’t rely on individual identifiers or user data like targeted account-based tactics; instead, messages are tailored based on more contextual information like geotargeting and dayparting, relying on screen location and time of day to optimize ad delivery
  • Measurement:  A key benefit to simplifying your digital OOH workflow is integrated reporting. Using the predefined view for Digital Out of Home, you’re able to view metrics that include publisher impressions. Publishers provide Display & Video 360 with an impression multiplier, estimating the number of people who may have seen an ad. It’s worth noting publishers that provide self-measured data are not supported.

What’s next for Digital OOH Campaigns? 

Time will tell if Google’s entrance into digital OOH disrupts the industry’s established players, but with advertising dollars on the line, there’s a major incentive for Google to get this right. Most importantly, integrating data from digital OOH campaigns into Display & Video 360 is a step toward giving marketers a more complete picture of the buyer journey. 

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