Emerging Trends in pDOOH: What to Look Out For in 2024

June 20, 2024
, written by
Zeenat Chola, Head of Sales India at FRAMEN
In the first half of 2024, brands have already seen the remarkable influence of digital out-of-home advertising campaigns on their visibility and reach, and as the year unfolds, this momentum is set to escalate further.

In the first half of 2024, brands have already seen the remarkable influence of digital out-of-home advertising campaigns on their visibility and reach, and as the year unfolds, this momentum is set to escalate further. A significant driver of this surge in digital out-of-home advertising is the advancement in programmatic digital out-of-home, or pDOOH, which continues to spur innovation in the industry. As consumer behaviors evolve, so do the trends that bring programmatic digital out-of-home advertising to life. To provide you with insights on how to effectively harness this dynamic form of digital advertising, we've laid out the most impactful trends in pDOOH to help you stay ahead of the curve.

1. Surge in Data-Driven Campaigns

The use of data in shaping advertising strategies has become indispensable for a successful campaign. In pDOOH, data-driven campaigns allow for precise audience targeting and performance measurement. By leveraging big data, AI, and machine learning, advertisers can deliver highly personalized content. Businesses who use data-driven strategies drive five to eight times as much ROI as businesses who don’t. Data analytics is a powerful way to inform a brand’s pDOOH strategies, and these trends are expected to intensify as these technologies advance. 

Personalization Through Data Insights 

Data-driven personalization is not a novel concept in digital marketing, but its application in pDOOH is creating new opportunities for advertisers. By integrating data from various sources—such as cell phones, social media, and buyer behavior—advertisers can create messages that resonate more deeply with specific audiences. For example, a sportswear brand can target ads based on real-time fitness app data, reaching active consumers at the right moment.

2. Real-Time Campaign Flexibility

One of the defining features of pDOOH in 2024 is the capability to adjust campaigns in real-time based on factors such as audience data and environmental conditions. This flexibility allows advertisers to respond instantly to variables such as traffic patterns, weather changes, and local events, ensuring their messages are always relevant and impactful.

Dynamic Content Management 

Dynamic content management systems (CMS) are playing a crucial role in this trend. These systems allow advertisers to pre-set conditions under which different ads will be displayed. For instance, an auto manufacturer can display different ads based on the time of day, promoting family vehicles during daytime hours and sports cars in the evening.

Impact on Audience Engagement 

Research shows that ads tailored to real-time conditions significantly enhance viewer engagement. One study found that dynamic ads outperformed static and native ads, increasing average time spent by 6%, brand recall by 25%, and ad recall by 17%, with the news category seeing the highest lifts in brand recall (61.8%) and ad recall (56.4%). This heightened engagement is crucial for brands looking to make a lasting impression in a crowded marketplace.

3. Expansion of Programmatic Inventory

The availability of programmatic inventory is expanding rapidly. More digital screens and billboards are becoming accessible programmatically, leading to a substantial increase in ad spend. Programmatic channels, which already account for more than 70% of digital ad spend, are also expected to continue growing by double-digits (10.2% three-year CAGR), reflecting the growing demand for automated and efficient advertising solutions. 

Broader Reach and Scalability 

This expansion is not limited to traditional urban centers. Digital screens are increasingly being deployed in suburban and rural areas, airports, shopping malls, and transit stations, and even more precisely targeted indoor screens in gyms, hotels, coworking spaces and more. This broader reach allows advertisers to scale their campaigns more effectively and target diverse demographics.

4. Innovative Creative Formats

Technological advancements are pushing the boundaries of creativity in pDOOH. Interactive displays, augmented reality (AR), 3D content and “FOOH” (Fake Out-of-Home) are becoming more prevalent, offering unique and engaging experiences that captivate audiences. These formats not only attract attention but also enhance brand recall and engagement.

Interactive Displays and AR Integration 

Interactive displays allow consumers to engage directly with ads, transforming passive viewers into active participants. For instance, AR can overlay digital information onto physical surroundings, creating immersive experiences. Retail brands, in particular, are using AR to let consumers virtually try on products, enhancing the shopping experience and driving sales. One example of this was Coach’s AR display outside of one of their stores in New York City, which allowed passersby to virtually try on their “Tabby” handbag without entering the store. 

3D Content for Impactful Visuals 

3D content adds a new dimension to digital advertising. It creates visually stunning ads that stand out in busy environments. A notable example is Coca-Cola’s 3D billboard in Times Square, which featured dynamic, three-dimensional animations that captivated onlookers and significantly boosted posts and shares on social media, solidifying the campaign as a success in brand visibility and effective advertising. 

5. Seamless Integration with Mobile and Social Media

The integration of pDOOH with mobile and social media platforms is creating a more cohesive and interactive consumer experience. This cross-channel approach allows for synchronized campaigns that amplify brand messaging and drive higher engagement. Integrated campaigns have been shown to significantly increase engagement rates, underscoring their effectiveness and reach. 

Cross-Channel Campaigns 

By syncing pDOOH campaigns with mobile and social media efforts, advertisers can create a unified and seamless brand experience across multiple platforms. This integrated approach ensures that the message resonates with the audience in various contexts, enhancing overall engagement and brand recall. For instance, a digital billboard might prompt viewers to engage with a social media hashtag, driving online conversations and extending the campaign’s reach. Additionally, a mobile ad could direct users to a nearby store featured on a pDOOH screen, while social media posts could provide exclusive discounts or promotions linked to the digital display content, amplifying the campaign’s impact and fostering deeper connections with the audience.

Enhanced Consumer Journey 

This seamless integration ensures a consistent brand message across different touchpoints, enhancing the consumer journey. A study found that marketers who created a more omnichannel experience earned a 90% higher customer retention rate over single-channel marketers, and those customers who do engage with an omnichannel experience spend 13%, further highlighting the effectiveness of cross-channel advertising. 

6. Focus on Sustainability

Sustainability is a growing priority in the pDOOH industry. Advertisers and media owners are adopting eco-friendly practices, such as using energy-efficient screens and sourcing renewable energy. This shift not only reduces environmental impact but also aligns with the values of environmentally conscious consumers. 

Green Technologies and Practices 

Energy-efficient LED screens and solar-powered digital signage are becoming more common. Advertisers and media owners are also implementing practices to minimize waste, such as digital content management that reduces the need for physical materials. Traditional billboards require large quantities of paper and adhesive materials, which have a significant impact on the environment given that they must be replaced each time a new campaign is launched. 

Consumer Perception and Brand Image 

Sustainability initiatives can enhance brand image and resonate with consumers who prioritize environmental responsibility. A Nielsen survey found that 73% of global consumers are willing to change their consumption habits to reduce environmental impact, indicating a strong market for sustainable advertising. 

7. Enhanced Measurement and Attribution

Accurate measurement and attribution are critical for assessing campaign performance and ROI. In 2024, advancements in measurement technologies are providing clearer insights into the effectiveness of pDOOH campaigns. Enhanced metrics, such as foot traffic analysis and sales lift, are helping advertisers quantify the impact of their efforts more precisely.

Advanced Analytics Tools 

New analytics tools are enabling more detailed tracking of consumer interactions with pDOOH ads. Technologies like geofencing and beacon technology provide real-time data on consumer movements and behaviors, allowing for more accurate attribution. For example, geofencing tracks foot traffic patterns, while beacon technology triggers targeted messages to nearby smartphones. Additionally, facial recognition can analyze viewer demographics and engagement, and heat mapping shows the most frequented areas around the ad, helping advertisers optimize placement and content.

8. AI and Machine Learning Integration

AI and machine learning are major game changers for pDOOH in the way that they provide automated decision-making, predictive analytics, and advanced targeting. These technologies enhance efficiency and effectiveness, allowing advertisers to analyze large datasets, optimize ad placements, and create personalized content. The integration of AI is expected to drive significant productivity gains and innovation in the industry.

Predictive Analytics and Targeting 

AI-powered predictive analytics can forecast consumer behavior and optimize ad placements accordingly. This ensures that ads reach the right audience at the right time, maximizing impact and ROI.

Content Creation and Optimization 

AI is also being used to create and optimize content. Machine learning algorithms can generate ad creatives that are tailored to specific audience segments, enhancing relevance and engagement. For instance, AI can analyze social media trends to craft timely and culturally relevant ads.

Challenges and Considerations 

As AI and automation become more integral to digital advertising, the importance of data privacy grows with it. Advertisers must ensure that sensitive data is securely handled and that trust is maintained with users. This involves complying with data protection regulations, being transparent about data usage, and employing solid cybersecurity measures to safeguard consumer information.

The pDOOH landscape in 2024 is characterized by rapid technological advancements, increased data utilization, and a strong focus on sustainability and integration. By staying informed about these trends and leveraging the opportunities they present, industry professionals can create impactful, innovative, and efficient advertising campaigns.