Sleigh the Season – The power of Out of Home advertising this Christmas 

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With less than 100 days until Christmas, we’re seeing consumers immerse themselves in the spirit of the season. From days out and trying festive menus to shopping for gifts and dinner with loved ones, the onset of winter ushers in shifts in consumer behaviour. All these activities, alongside normal day to day life, mean that audiences will be OUTSIDE this festive season. Out of Home advertising at Christmas provides the perfect opportunity for brands to influence consumers. 

In this blog, we will explore these opportunities and share our heady mix of creativity, technology and data to help brands connect with audiences and reap the rewards using OOH advertising this Christmas. It all starts with thinking outside_ 

Key Shopping Dates 

Christmas shopping is skewed throughout Q4, with big events such as Black Friday, providing audiences with ample opportunity to shop for the best deals. According to an IPA survey, the bulk of Christmas shopping starts as early as September and as late as the third week of December.

The most popular times for gift buying are the first half of November (21%), the first week of December (which has increased YoY from 15% to 21%) and Black Friday Week (16%). Unsurprisingly, 72% of consumers are planning to get the best deals by shopping for gifts this Black Friday. Despite economic uncertainty last year, an impressive £12.3 billion (Mintel) was spent on Black Friday (vs £2.53 billion pre-Pandemic) with a +13.9% increase in high street footfall YoY.

Shoppers are Hybrid

This year, 73% of adults will research their purchases beforehand and 77% of under-35s are setting aside some of their Christmas budget for the sales. According to data from Yodel, 61% of Brits are “hybrid shoppers,” shopping both online and in-store for Christmas gifts.

For the hybrid shopper, we recommend an omnichannel approach. When used in combination with digital channels, OOH increases the effectiveness of online ads by +31%, paid social ads by +56% and +80% for search ads. Consumers already spend an average of 70% of their time outside of their homes – so OOH is a prime channel for reaching these audiences and an omnichannel approach can increase overall reach by 68%.

Timing Your Message is Everything 

With audiences thinking of Black Friday and Christmas purchases throughout the festive buildup, it is important to time your message effectively. Audiences are thinking about Black Friday purchases up to 2 months prior to the event, with the majority thinking of their purchases 1-2 months to 1-2 weeks prior. This provides brands with an ample window of opportunity to get their messaging in front of consumers early to avoid the Black Friday clutter. 

It will certainly be an end-of-year push to fill stockings for most consumers this year, as their preparations are set to begin sooner than last. So, how do we ensure that we effectively reach these “scramblers” with OOH? 

Audience-first Planning 

What makes OOH advertising at Christmas so advantageous for brands is its ability to work across all stages of the purchasing funnel. In recent years, the advancements in digital capabilities have shifted the role of OOH from being primarily a top-of-the-funnel medium to working across the whole funnel. 

Out of Home’s role has evolved and continues to evolve based on: 

  • Audience Targeting: +15% higher levels of audience relevance 
  • Reactive Activation: The ability to book panels in the hour for the next hour 
  • Driving Bottom End Metrics: 2x increase in purchase intent 

Using an audience first planning approach in Out of Home benefits our clients: 

  • Brand 1: Saw a +28% increase in on-target impressions vs. Busy high-street gifter audience 
  • Brand 2: Achieved a +50% Uplift in on-target impressions vs. In-market gifters & the brand’s consumers 
  • Brand 3: Saw a +12% Increase in footfall to the store vs. Competitors during the campaign 

One brand in particular, used audience-first planning to drive footfall to store over the Christmas period using Out of Home. Utilising Atlas, the retailer’s campaign activated OOH based on the recent movements of Luxury Christmas Shoppers. As a result, they saw +17% Higher levels of store footfall vs. Their competitors, and a +42% Increase in visits seen in London across the campaign. 

Driving Action Through Out of Home Advertising This Christmas 

So, how do brands drive action this festive period? There are six ways a brand can achieve this: 

  1. Be at the “moment of truth” 

Proximity advertising resonates with consumers. Proximity targeting during the festive period offers brands the opportunity to capitalise on the unique context, emotions and activities associated with these special times. Consumers feel that adverts in proximity to the store are more noticeable than adverts in other locations, which influences consumer action.

  1. Lean into context with dynamic creative  

This is even more crucial around the holidays and allows brands to connect emotionally with their audience. 

  1. Reach more of your audience through OOH 

Utilise audience-first planning to optimise any OOH campaign, improve brand awareness and increase purchase intent. With our DMP Ada, brands can be as narrow or as broad as they require. 

For brands wanting to optimise their audience-first OOH plan further, we recommend activating digital Out of Home programmatically via our DSP Atlas.

  1. Own key consumption opportunities with programmatic (prOOH) 

Data shows that the use of Atlas can deliver strong brand payback on consideration and purchase intent metrics. PROOH drives purchase intent. 

  1. Shoppable OOH 

QR codes are helping to bridge the gap between online and offline channels. They can provide quick access to holiday promotions, discounts or event information, enhancing the holiday shopping experience and improving the effectiveness of your Out of Home advertising this Christmas. 

  1. Amplify with creativity to increase attention 

Special builds are a great addition to any marketing plan, whether they serve as a vessel for social content or supplement/lead an OOH campaign. Special builds make an impact and can generate viral attention. 

As a result of being exposed to this special build for Sainsbury’s

  • 64% agreed it made them like Sainsbury’s ad more. 
  • 6 in 10 also agreed it made them more likely to shop at Sainsbury’s. 

Experiential OOH is another brilliant way of amplifying attention and positive feelings towards a brand. With consumers desiring real experiences, experiential OOH physically places brands in the action.

Ready to sleigh the season with Out of Home advertising this Christmas? Get in touch with Talon today!