Opportunities for Out of Home: Why Remaining in Step 3 Isn’t so Bad!

Although the news that we aren’t yet progressing to step 4 of the UK Government’s plan may not be what we wanted – it’s not all bad news. In fact, we currently have the most freedom we’ve had in well over a year.

Remaining in step 3 until July 19th means we can still travel, meet up to 30 people outdoors and visit hospitality venues such as restaurants, pubs and cinemas. Large outdoor events (only operating at 50% capacity or less) are still permitted too, as well as the removal of the 30-person limit on weddings and other commemorative events.

Although we are still in step 3, we still have the most freedom we’ve had in over a year.

The UK Government has stepped up its vaccination process, now offering anyone aged 18 and over a vaccine. Within just two days, over 1 million people took advantage of this scheme and booked in a vaccination. It’s hoped that all adults will have had their first dose by July 19th, and everyone aged over 50 – including the clinically vulnerable – will have been offered their second dose.

Consumer Sentiment is at a 5-Year High 

YouGov – Consumer Confidence Index

With Government restrictions the most lenient in well over a year, it’s no surprise that consumer sentiment is at a 5-year high. A recent study by YouGov found that consumer confidence has hit an index of 113.6, the highest level since April 2016. The study also found that outlook on job security is currently the highest on record at 118.9, and confidence among households about personal finances also at a record high, with that measure improving by +2.7 in past month and expectations up by 1.5 points.

Retail & the Economy 

Since reopening on April 12th, non-essential retail has been performing exceptionally well, with May retail sales seeing the highest rise since the pandemic began. According to The British Retail Consortium, retail sales increased +10% in May 2021 vs May 2019. Sales of clothing since the reopening of indoor hospitality also increased by over +100% as online sales fell to 39% in May. Research from Barclaycard also found that spending increased by +7.6% in May 2021 vs May 2019.

As well as retail, the economy is also experiencing growth – growing +2.3% in April (the third monthly growth in a row). By the end of 2021, the economy is predicted to grow by +8.2% despite the end of lockdown being delayed.

Footfall & Travel 

We’ve also witnessed audiences using public transport returning to near-normal levels. As of June 7th, JCDecaux found that its rail D6s were reaching half of total impacts and 60% of campaign reach – predicting that by June 21st this will reach 60% and 76% respectively.

Rail and tube audiences are returning (JCDecaux & Global Outdoor)

Global Outdoor has also seen the weekly reach of its Tube audience increase considerably, impressive considering the numbers still working from home, showing that London is being used particularly as a social hub.

For UK footfall and mobility, the latest data from Google Community Mobility Reports found a +60% increase in footfall for national parks, public beaches and public gardens for w/c June 17th.  Audiences are enjoying the warmer weather as well as the easing flexibility of restrictions. Latest data from the Transport Technology Forum also found that weekly traffic data is reaching 104% of that of pre-pandemic levels – further solidifying that audiences are as mobile as ever.

UK footfall continues to rise

So, there are huge positives around audiences out of home. Brands can be confident in targeting these audiences to drive engagement, brand awareness and action. The summer is bringing numerous opportunities around events, recovery and a release of socialisation for brands putting their best creative foot forward for recovery in 2021.

For more information, please contact marketing@talonoutdoor.com or get in touch with your Talon Planner to discuss OOH opportunities within the mall and retail environment.