Talon MENA, the Global and regional Out of Home (OOH) advertising specialist, has joined The Interactive Advertising Bureau GCC (IAB GCC) as a member as of August 2022.

Established in May 2019, The IAB GCC is the regional voice and thought leader of the region’s interactive marketing and advertising industry, committed to building a sustainable future for digital advertising.  

Through the membership, Talon will bring its expertise in digital and programmatic OOH to the IAB’s activities and initiatives. 

“We are delighted to join the IAB GCC and to work alongside fellow members to help positively shape the future of MENA’s OOH industry. Talon recently launched in MENA to accelerate the OOH growth in the region, helping to further educate clients on the extensive OOH opportunities by tapping into richer behavioral and location insights, in order to quantify the channel’s true impact across the customer journey. 

We look forward to working with the IAB GCC stakeholders to build on the digital OOH and programmatic conversation” said Chadi Farhat, Managing Director Talon MENA.

Talon today announced further expansion of its global footprint with new offices and leadership in Singapore and Dubai. 

Melanie Lindquist and Chadi Farhat will lead Singapore and Dubai respectively.  Farhat and Lindquist are tasked with accelerating OOH growth in these key regions; ensuring clients realise the full potential of their OOH investment through Talon’s proprietary technology platforms and award-winning creative innovation.

Talon’s strategy-led leadership will help educate brands and agencies on the extensive OOH opportunities for tapping into richer behavioural and location insights for quantifying the channel’s true impact across the customer journey.

Powered by Talon’s deep investments in market-leading AdTech platforms Talon will offer smarter, data-driven and creative-led OOH planning and buying to offer brands and agencies around the world a powerful path for accessing innovative capabilities to fuel outcomes-based OOH campaigns. 

Talon’s international footprint provides on the ground knowledge and expertise that ensures we can effectively plan buy and execute client campaigns in over 100 markets. In partnership with local media owners Talon will make it easier for advertisers in more markets to access and execute captivating and performance-driven OOH campaigns and drive OOH revenue growth.

Barry Cupples, Talon Group CEO commented: “With the continued growth of OOH revenues around the world this is the perfect time for Talon to expand our global presence. Mel and Chadi are first-class operators and we are delighted to have them on board as we continue to deliver our market-leading independent position within OOH. APAC & MENA now have the very best talent, which coupled with Talon’s data-fuelled technology will bring game-changing opportunities for advertisers. 

Supported by clear measurement this will undoubtedly deliver strong client “outcomes” and brand performance, and ultimately provide top and bottom-line growth for advertisers which is at the core of the service Talon strives to deliver.”

APAC – Singapore  

Bringing a wealth of knowledge with her, Lindquist is an awarded media professional who has led marketing, strategy, data and sales operations teams for the past two decades across radio, television, digital, eCommerce and OOH.  After five years in Australian OOH directing client strategy, planning, data and sales operations teams, Lindquist relocated to Singapore in early 2021 and continued to consult and advise on OOH and establish a full-service customer team for a leading Singaporean-based eCommerce technology company. Committed to industry development, Lindquist has also mentored and advised on policy for several industry groups including the Australian Marketing Institute (AMI).

Speaking about her new role in Talon APAC, Lindquist said: “I am thrilled to be joining Talon to deliver scale, agility, and expanded capabilities to the Singapore and APAC region. For the first time brands, agencies and their clients will have the benefit of Talon’s global reach with full service, independent and data-backed expertise as the regional OOH industry develops at an exciting pace.”

MENA – Dubai 

Farhat has spent the last 25 years working across media, marketing, and communication within leading media agency groups in MENA.  In his last role as Chief Investment Officer at Omnicom Media Group, he orchestrated multiple mergers and acquisitions within the industry; with the aim to unremittingly improve the product offerings to the company’s portfolio of advertisers whilst strongly contributing to the growth of the business year on year. Farhat is a passionate, focused and highly driven leader. An envisioned and bold strategist, he has built an illustrious career across the Levant, GCC, and the wider Middle East’s media ecosystem  

Farhat added: “I am hugely excited to be able to bring clients in the MENA region a unique OOH planning and buying offering they cannot find anywhere else.  Talon will provide advertisers with world-class regional and international service, innovative technology capabilities, creative executions and high-touch collaboration to deliver measurable and optimised value, as well as the unmissable outcomes that only OOH can offer.”

Since its inception, online retail has changed immeasurably. Over the past decade alone there have been changes in device usage, channel and an expansion of the global marketplace. Online has grown steadily as a percentage of overall retail sales since 2000. During the last few years online spending has really taken off, coinciding with a slowdown in instore spending, underlining the change in consumer behaviour. 

Online retail can provide a quick route to market for many brands and retailers, allowing for tighter turnaround times for fast fashion and an avenue to test new styles with lower cost implications. The core demographic of 15-24s may be easily retargeted with online ads to drive spend, but there is a looming issue expressly championed by many in this demographic that could affect brand popularity and trust.

Fast fashion is a hot topic amongst younger shoppers and experiencing a push back, giving rise to a more ethical, ecologically conscious type of consumer. Seen as increasingly harmful to the environment through its creation of mass amounts of pollution and toxic waste, the 15-24s are the biggest advocate group for environmental concerns. As on the most influential group in the fast fashion space brands need to keep a cautious eye on this evolving trend. While many retailers are including sustainable fashion lines, their main income is from the cheaper, mass produced end of the scale. Getting the balance right of handling 15-24s desire for the latest fashions but in an ecologically conscious manner that doesn’t cost too much, is a difficult line to tread. It’s therefore crucial that brands build trust as a key pillar in their brand perception, who integrate with people’s everyday lives and core beliefs.

Out of Home offers online retailers and opportunity to infiltrate the real-world space, without the need for a brick and mortar store. By using OOH not only do they integrate with consumers everyday lives, but also promote trust and reliability showing that they are able to engage consumers offline as well as on.

Whilst many online retailers do not spend heavily on OOH, there are immense opportunities for a creative approach when it comes to the OOH landscape. For example, online retailer, Pretty Little Thing, aimed at 14-24s, captured consumers attention through pop-ups at festivals and bus-wraps across major cities in the UK featuring their memorable pink unicorn motif. Taking a creative approach such as this, puts the brands positively in the minds of consumers and helps to cement their authenticity as a reputable business.   

Online retailers may be pulling spend away from stores but there are more ways than just online to influence their target audiences. OOH provides a direct way to impact their most influential audience, driving online action and providing lasting memorable experiences through the use of creative experiential OOH. The same experiential OOH that can even be used to capture content to use for online advertising spend to retarget the same group! Overall, online retailers need to remember that targeting consumers through other touchpoints such as OOH offers a tangible and memorable way to drive action, improve brand recall and embed a brand in a consumers mind.