Analysts report that digital out-of-home/digital place-based media continue to grow faster than the general economy and other media (DOOH is outpaced only by mobile advertising). Although the growth rate has somewhat decelerated since 2010, new digital signage networks keep emerging every month, while successful existing ones get bigger by way of acquisitions and organic expansion. PQ Media calculates that, in the US alone, over 1.5 million digital signs are in operation in 2013. The growth of networks is fueling the supply of hardware, software and services; competition among providers is getting tougher and more big name manufacturers are joining the race.
DOOH Is Not a Budget Line Item Yet
As the new medium keeps maturing, has DOOH advertising finally taken its place as a staple line item in media budgets? Apparently, not yet…
Thanks to some pioneering efforts, we do see a growing number of high-profile campaigns run on major digital signage networks by a few top brands. However, those instances are more the exception rather than the rule. Despite the fact that DOOH advertising has proven its value over and over again in trial campaigns, it has not become a mass phenomenon. According to the latest PQ Media report, networks still lack scale and reach and are hard to find, evaluate and buy. Remarkably, most mainstream ad agencies remain largely unaware of the medium and its capabilities.
The Trouble with Aggregation
A few years ago the concept of ad space aggregation in DOOH media became popular and was perceived to be a solution for bridging the gap between the new medium and real ad dollars. Several companies rushed into the space, offering access to DOOH network inventory, audience estimates and ‘hassle-free’ multi-network campaign placement.
Sadly, by 2012 most of these companies either went out of business or failed to gain any significant market share.
I interviewed Daniel Parisien of BroadSign, Ken Goldberg of Real Digital Media, Stuart Armstrong of ComQi, John Laramie of ADstruc and Jeremy Ozen of Vistar Media. All agree that the problem seems to be not in the concept itself but in the execution. Continue reading