Outdoor advertising offers a number of advantages:
1. Wide coverage of local markets. With proper placement, a broad base of exposure is possible in local markets, with both day and night presence. A 100 GRP showing (the percentage of duplicated audience exposed to an outdoor poster daily) could yield exposure to an equivalent of 100 percent of the marketplace daily, or 3,000 GRPs over a month. This level of coverage is likely to yield high levels of reach.
2. Frequency. Because purchase cycles are typically for 30-day periods, consumers are usually exposed a number of times, resulting in high levels of frequency.
3. Geographic flexibility. Outdoor can be placed along highways, near stores, or on mobile billboards, almost anywhere that laws permit. Local, regional, or even national markets may be covered.
4. Creativity. As shown in Exhibit 13-1, outdoor ads can be very creative. Large print, colors, and other elements attract attention.
5. Ability to create awareness. Because of its impact (and the need for a simple message), outdoor can lead to a high level of awareness.
6. Efficiency. Outdoor usually has a very competitive CPM when compared to other media. The average CPM of outdoor is approximately one-half of radio ih fi**>« and far less than that of TV, magazines, and newspapers.
7. Effectiveness. Outdoor advertising can often lead to sales, as demonstrated in Figure 13-3. In a study reported by BBDO advertising, 35 percent of consumers surveyed said they had called a phone number they saw on an out-of-home ad.4 A study reported by Mukesh Bhargava and Naveen Donthu showed that outdoor advertising can have a significant effect on sales, particularly when combined with a promotion.5
8. Production capabilities. Modern technologies have reduced production times for outdoor advertising to allow for rapid turnaround time.
At the same time, however, there are limitations to outdoor, many of them related to its advantages:
1. Waste coverage. While it is possible to reach very specific audiences, in many cases the purchase of outdoor results in a high degree of waste coverage. It is not likely that everyone driving past a billboard is part of the target market.
2. Limited message capabilities. Because of the speed with which most people pass by outdoor ads, exposure time is short, so messages are limited to a few words and/or an illustration. Lengthy appeals are not likely to be effective.
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Exhibit 13-3 Most desirable out-of-home advertising locations
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