Why Outdoor Media Owners Should Think About Their Content Strategy
A decade ago, the term “content strategy” was relatively new in the world of media and marketing; and many brands were just beginning to explore what good content — that was relevant, informative, and not just brand-promotional — could do for their businesses.
Ten years later, content is considered an essential part of any marketing and communication strategy. As Forbes points out, content makes your customers trust you more; it attracts new viewers; and it complements inbound marketing.
However, in the realm of out-of-home (OOH) media, it still seems less focused. And maybe that’s understandable – OOH is a medium that needs to grab the viewer’s attention quickly; store and print a brand message in seconds before the consumer changes location. In the case of digital out-of-home (DOOH) signage, you also need to consider a planned flight schedule, based on the time slots and frequency selected by your advertisers. This leaves little room for a lot of “strategy” in your content.
Yet, as owners of outside media, I believe we should thinking about our content strategy. Yes, displaying our customers’ ads is our primary purpose and that won’t change, but there are other ways to build traction so people dungeon look at our digital billboards, consider them a source not only of advertising but also of useful information.
The reality is that any marketing channel should effectively integrate the two. A good business email newsletter will contain a mix of product or service information intended to encourage sales, as well as content that engages the reader.
As outdoor media owners, our content strategy must answer the following questions:
· How do we find new reasons for consumers to look at our digital billboards?
· How do we create a content-centric approach, with the space limitations inherent in our display boards?
· How do we integrate information that is relevant and useful to our community, in a way that is also quick and affordable to deploy?
· How can our billboards provide service and add more value to our communities?
· Can other content complement our advertisers’ campaigns, creating the kind of buy-in that will benefit our customers?
· How do we empower and uplift our communities, leveraging the resources at our disposal?
Over the past two years, we at Tractor Outdoor have asked ourselves these questions over and over again.
This has led us to develop a holistic content strategy which we have deployed on our digital billboards, which aims to integrate community-centric content into our clients’ advertisements, creating a good balance between informational and advertising content. .
One of the ways we have achieved this goal is by launching an events platform that allows schools, charities, churches, music groups and other community organizations to promote events in their quarters – for free. By accessing Tractor’s events page, users complete a simple form which allows them to upload their function details. These informative text updates circulate on our network of digital screens in the area where the event is taking place, between our clients’ campaigns. The platform thus acts as a modern version of the old community bulletin board, whether you saw in malls or town halls.
We also spent time thinking about non-profit organizations (NPOs) we can support that will benefit from having access to high-reach, high-frequency media like ours. To this end, we have partnered with Missing Children South Africa (MCSA), an organization that assists authorities whenever a child is reported missing.
When a child goes missing, speed is essential because the longer the time that elapses, the lower the chance that they will be returned home safe and sound. The beauty of DOOH is that it enables rapid communication in the market, and so we have offered our nationwide network to MCSA for free, enabling the rapid communication of missing child alerts to key areas.
Another organization we have partnered with is the WOOF project; an animal adoption pop-up initiative powered by an Oscars Arc registered NPO. Through our network, we give these future adoptees visibility, helping them secure a loving home for them.
In 2020, with the outbreak of Covid-19, we launched our #SMEHeroes campaign and advertising fund, to support the small businesses hardest hit by the pandemic. Through this fund, we have provided SMEs with free advertising through our media network to help them survive the country’s difficult period of confinement. Part-and-parcel was a media package that included social and digital advertising, video as well as public relations. This way we were able to both support and add value to our community during a difficult time.
While these initiatives have played a key role in rolling out our content, we know our strategy will continue to evolve. However, it will always be underpinned by the desire to bring value to everything our stakeholders – which include our advertisers as well as the wider community.
And let’s be honest. Would you like to read a magazine whose pages are filled with nothing but advertisements? But a magazine that’s packed with high-quality editorial features, informative infomercials, and visually arresting advertisements is something you can read cover-to-cover – which also means you’re much more receptive to brand messaging. contained in these pages.
Why should OOH be any different?
Remi du Preez is an integral part of the Tractor Outdoor management team, serving as Commercial Director. As one of the first individuals to introduce pDOOH to the local external market, he cites his mission to make OOH “more responsible” through the use of innovative technology.
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