Out-of-Home and the Smart City

The shift toward smart cities is here. From better transportation hubs to self-driving vehicles, cities are harnessing the power of big data and technology to improve processes, increase efficiency and make city living more livable. And, with a projected increase of 2.5 billion people residing in urban areas by 2050, cities will not only rely on technology, but also sustainable city planning to accommodate this massive growth.

When it comes to advertising, smart, sustainable cities will absolutely have an impact on media channels, particularly, out-of-home. Here’s how OOH will be affected and is poised to adapt.

Location, location, location. The increased movement and connectedness that smart cities will create benefits nearly every form of OOH. More efficient transit systems mean more eyes on transit advertising and more opportunities to promote goods, services and experiences. And, smart cities will only enhance OOH locations by providing media professionals with insight into the way cities work—ultimately enabling more-powerful media planning and OOH campaigns.

Knowledge is power. The data collection tools pioneered by the OOH industry align well with the measurement needs of smart-city planning. Organizations like Geopath monitor OOH circulation, demographic characteristics and trip diagnostics. OOH assets like billboards and digital screens are increasingly equipped with cameras to track and record demographic information such as age and gender. Identifying patterns, understanding needs—the goals are the same for OOH and building smarter cities.

Going the distance. Environmental sustainability will be a crucial component of future urban development. OOH has been “going green” for a number of years. Digital boards are producing higher-quality images and using less energy. Most OOH companies use recyclable materials in their production processes—limiting the resources required to create quality advertising. The inherent flexibility of OOH even allows ads, such as Coca-Cola’s Green Billboard, to incorporate natural elements into urban designs.

City life is going to change, but OOH’s unique set of competencies—integration, measurability and sustainability—will allow it to evolve, adapt, and grow in our shifting urban landscape.

DOmedia is a leading technology platform for planning and buying out-of-home (OOH) ad campaigns. In 2017, DOmedia’s enterprise platform powered over 10% of U.S. out-of-home media spend. DOmedia’s new advertiser-direct marketplace, BillboardsIn.com, empowers anyone to quickly source proposals from competing vendors and execute campaigns online via DOmedia’s industry-leading database of over one million OOH assets.

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