Media planning basics: all about out-of-home

Billboards often come to mind as a prime and popular use of  out-of-home (OOH) advertising . But did you know that there are actually tons of OOH media types? If you haven’t dabbled in OOH yet, here are the basics of why it’s used, the different types and how to get started.

What is OOH advertising?

Out-of-home media refers to any type of communication that reaches a consumer when they are outside of their home. Typically, we think of billboards, posters and mass transit placards as the standard OOH media options. But digital OOH is emerging as a bigger part of this market than ever before. For example, have you ever noticed the TV screens running ads while you’re waiting to fill your tank of gas the gas station? How about the digital billboards that have sprung up along the Interstate?

Why is OOH advertising used?

Out-of-home advertising reaches people as they are on the go. Due to the fact that more people are spending less time at home, and are less exposed to traditional media, advertisers are looking for innovative ways to reach this audience during their busy, mobile lives. Advertisers use OOH to gain brand awareness that lasts and cut through the clutter and competition that often goes along with traditional media. The stand-along format often gives OOH an edge. Further, OOH can be used to cast a wide net and attract as many consumers as possible. On the flip side, some forms can be highly targeted; for example, placing an ad at a sports arena allows you to reach a niche audience of fans.

How can I find OOH advertising opportunities?

In the SRDS Out-of-Home Media database, we offer subscribers comprehensive planning data on U.S. place-based and traditional outdoor out-of-home media.

  • 25 out-of-home categories
  • 2,400+ out-of-home media

What is "Place-Based" OOH Media?

Place-based OOH media includes a multitude of formats that are specifically located where certain groups assemble for different purposes. Examples include:

  • Airport: Wall dioramas, clocks, posters and kiosks.
  • College Campus/School: Display racks, bulletin boards, sponsored TV ads and college magazines.
  • Indoor: Billboards in the restrooms of restaurants, health clubs, arenas, movie theaters and night clubs.
  • In-Flight: Magazine binders, in-flight movies, seat backs and disposal bags.
  • In-Store: Shopping carts, store shelves, clocks, audio and checkout coupons.
  • Shopping Mall: Kiosks and wall displays at shopping malls.
  • Stadium/Arena/Sports Team: Wall displays, scoreboards and programs.
  • Truckside/Truckstop: Display panels on sides, rear, front of trucks. Display signage at truck stops and interstate travel centers.
  • Event Marketing: Special events, promotions and product sampling/demonstrations.
  • Other Specialized Media: Out-of-home media not classified elsewhere in this directory. Includes interactive and opportunities.

What is "Traditional" Outdoor Media?

Traditional OOH media types favor general brand awareness and are not tied to a specific location. Examples include:

  • Aerial/Inflatables: Balloons, blimps, skywriting and banners.
  • Bus Shelter: Backlit displays and posters.
  • Digital Media: Advertising on mobile telephones or wireless PDAs.
  • Mobile Advertising: Mobile billboards on trucks.
  • Outdoor: Billboards including posters, bulletins and painted walls.
  • Sampling/Street Teams: Product sampling at high-traffic venues/locations.
  • Telephone Kiosk: Printed displays on free-standing public telephone enclosures.
  • Transit: Commuter transit platforms, trains and buses.
  • Vehicle Wraps: Integrated mobile advertising that often incorporates staffing, routes or timing, or sampling into client programs.

Out-of-home is expanding right alongside digital advertising, making it an even more critical capability for media planners young and old. Ensure that your brand is using OOH most effectively and sign in to today to find out what the top OOH media companies, brands and networks are doing for their clients.

Search article