The humble billboard has come a long way since the slap ’em up and hope for the best days, and, thanks to the new era of data-driven campaigns, Brits now see 1.1 billion digital out-of-home ads over the course of a week – up 36% from just a year ago.
That is according to new weekly impact figures from Route, a body funded by the outdoor sector, which show 68% of Britons will see a digital screen at least once a week.
There are now 11,024 digital screens across the UK, 51% more than last year, according to Route. And while digital sites account for only 3% the UK market – there are a whopping 380,179 traditional sites – they claw in 48% of all outdoor revenues, according to a separate study by Outsmart.
The Route research also claims that the “urban clustering” of digital screens means 37% of all digital impacts are seen by 15- to 34-year-olds and 63% by ABC1s.
Route general manager Euan Mackay said: “The data shows another strong performance for digital out-of-home with a lot of new screens being included in the measurement system, which is helping to increase the audience.
“It’s also encouraging to see the distribution of these screens spreading further, meaning that advertisers can take advantage of all the benefits of digital ads, such as movement and environmentally contextual triggers, on an even wider scale than ever before.”
According to a recent Warc report, global DOOH spending is expected to grow 10.1% each year up to 2021, accounting for the entirety of growth in the out of home market.
Its Global Ad Trends, published late last year, predicted that digital’s share of total global outdoor adspend was expected to hit 37.3% – or $14.6bn – last year (up from 34.8% in 2017, 32.4% in 2016 and 22.7% in 2012).
Spending on traditional sites will start to decline from next year while spending on digital sites will continue to rise as major providers like JC Decaux and Clear Channel accelerate their investment as advertisers grab the opportunity to combine data-driven targeting with powerful, dynamic creative.
Warc data editor James McDonald said: “The combined power of digital out of home and mobile location data can be used to add greater targeting capabilities to a broadcast medium, serving programmatically-traded creative by the hour to the right people, in the right place, at the right time.
“This is an enticing prospect for advertisers looking to leverage digital’s strengths without the risks of ad blocking, fraud, and negative adjacency.”
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