January 26, 2021

What is DOOH?

DOOH Advertising and Its Benefits: An Introduction

Brands cannot grow without effective advertising. That’s why companies such as Coca-Cola, McDonald's, Apple, and Samsung spend millions of dollars on their advertising to build global brands. Aside from traditional media outlets, the two primary channels to reach consumers today are online advertising and outdoor advertising, otherwise known as Out-of-home (OOH) advertising.

Online advertising has flourished with the prevalence of mobile phones, social media, and user data. But while this channel continues to capture a big share of overall ad spend, OOH advertising remains one of the few channels still growing globally as  companies realize the importance of brand positioning. OOH is also becoming more and more digitized. This new form of OOH is called digital out-of-home advertising (DOOH). 

What is OOH?

Out-of-home advertising (OOH) is a type of visual advertisement media found -- yes, you guessed it -- outside of the home. Billboards, digital signage, and street ads all fall under this group, and can be found in a wide array of places, from airports and train stations to stadiums and movie theaters. 

The top companies investing in this ad channel include McDonald's, Apple, Amazon, HBO, and Coca-Cola. Most of these companies strategically use OOH to advertise their products. Comparatively however, OOH advertising is expensive, with total spending in the ad industry currently is estimated at a whopping $29 billion. So why is OOH advertising still in such demand, and why would companies use OOH media to advertise their products?

Why would you use OOH?

As great as it is, there are many negative aspects of online advertising that make decision makers  opt for OOH. For one thing, tools such as ads blockers are commonly by people to effectively block and avoid seeing online advertisements. It’s also fairly easy to ignore, block, or skip online advertisements without creating a true impression, not to mention the fact that it’s also a crowded channel that can get quickly get both expensive and cluttered.

The same can’t be said for OOH advertisements. OOH media such as billboards, digital signage, digital displays, and others can’t be skipped or blocked. People can’t ignore prominent displays placed in important locations. Simply put, OOH media capture eyeballs, which is ultimately what advertisers want. .

OOH also strengthens customer confidence in your brand. Research from Ocean NeuroScience found that “consumers are 48% more likely to click on a mobile ad after being exposed to the same ad on an OOH ad first.”

Similarly, Nielsen and the Outdoor Advertising Association of America (OAAA) found that about half -- 46% -- of surveyed adults searched for the same item after seeing it in an OOH ad. Media buyers who utilize OOH for their advertising campaigns saw an associated increase in sales. Researchers indicate that OOH advertising improves ROI of ad campaigns by increasing the digital search effectiveness by 40%.

Of ‘traditional’ media categories, OOH advertising is the only one currently growing, in the single digits in 2018. The industry as a whole is expected to reach about $33 billion in sales by 2021.

OOH advertising has evolved in its own right in recent years. The entrance of digitization has stretched capabilities to new frontiers such as Digital Out-of-Home (DOOH) advertising, which now boasts state-of-the-art technology to deliver ads more effectively and precisely than ever before..

What is DOOH?

DOOH advertising is one of the fastest growing forms of advertising today due to its numerous technology-based features, such as programmable ads and more attractive visual effects. According to a World Advertising Research Center (WARC) report, DOOH advertising industry is expected to grow by 10% from 2018-2021, while the global DOOH market is expected to reach $8.3 billion by 2023.  

DOOH advertising offers programmable ads that can make use of targeting or retargeting, measurement, ad engagement, and traffic data. These features, which are exclusive to DOOH, allow companies to advertise in a more optimized way.


Targeting is one of DOOH’s most appealing  selling points. Ads are programmed to display at the right time with a maximum number of the desired audience seeing specific and relevant ads at the right time through targeting, making for more efficient DOOH spend.


While DOOH may not be the easiest medium to target ads on an individual basis, you can still perform effective mobile retargeting. For example, geofencing can be used to create virtual boundaries around a board that trigger the DOOH to display relevant advertising whenever a mobile device enters the area. 

They can send retargeted, personalized messages to each consumer who comes near the DOOH board. The tracking equipment uses aggregated and anonymous mobile data from third-party data providers to gain insights that take DOOH to a whole new level.

Higher Ad Engagement

Online advertising has lost some of its early charm. Advertisers have grown increasingly frustrated with the mixed results it yields. Over the past few years, engagement with online advertisements has been on the decline. There are multiple reasons behind this trend, namely the availability of ad blockers, expensive rates, inaccurate targeting, fraud, and even ad fatigue. For many small and medium businesses, this is not a sustainable channel on its own.

DOOH advertising thus has an opportunity to capture more ad dollars because it provides better value for money thanks to guaranteed ad engagement through attractive and innovative digital signage which give a new look to familiar outdoor advertisements.

Content Creativity

It’s impossible to overstate the importance of content to the advertisement advertisements industry. Content, after all, is currency. Without creative ads attracting  viewer attention, outdoor advertising is simply not as effective in creating lasting impressions. The advent of DOOH as a medium has boosted outdoor advertising through engaging digital displays presenting dynamic and creative content. 

Location-based advertising

Location-based information plays a vital role in DOOH advertising. Every city contains hotspots such as the downtown area, transport and commercial hubs,, public spaces, and other high footfall locations. These locations are prime targets for display advertisements, in which mobile-based location tracking analytics can be used to display optimized ads based on the type of traffic viewing the displays.

Hyperlocal advertising

With the prevalence of digital displays, advertisers today have more DOOH options than ever. Platforms such as Controlcast serve as a marketplace and booking platform that connects advertisers with local signage displays in high footfall locations such as hypermarkets, restaurants, salons, gyms, and more. Controlcast allows owners of those locations to easily control their signage content through an intuitive drag-and-drop content management system that allows them to accept ad requests from would-be advertisers to earn extra income. On the other side, advertisers can place ad requests in just 3 steps by simply choosing their targeted locations, uploading their media, and setting a budget linked to replays and impressions. Through such platforms, smart advertisers can complement their online marketing with affordable, targeted DOOH campaigns to enhance their ROI from ad spending.