As the second largest retail season after the winter holidays, the back-to-school shopping period is a pivotal time for brands to connect with consumers. Even though schools have just begun their summer holidays, parents are already feeling the pressure of preparing for the return to school amidst consistently high costs.  

In this blog, we lay our cards on the table – literally. These are OOHs ACES, the four cards we play to make sure your media plans deliver this back-to-school season.

OOH ACES
OOH’S ACES: Audience, Creative, Effective, Sustainable

Get to know the back-to-school AUDIENCE

Over the last year, the back-to-school shopping landscape has evolved. Inflation remains a major concern, with 84% of respondents feeling the impact of the cost of living on their shopping habits, though slightly down from last year. Interestingly fewer consumers are seeking offers (42% vs 89%), opting instead to budget more carefully, with 92% spending less, with a third spending between €200-€300. As a result of this there has been a notable decrease in higher spenders (down 20% in the €500-€1,000 range).

Timing as always remains crucial, with August emerging as the preferred shopping month as families prioritise summer vacations in June (21%) and July (17%) delaying back-to-school preparations. Women exhibit greater organisation, with only 2% waiting until the last week, compared to 12% of men.

Think CREATIVE

Retail environments are growing increasingly more creative, making it the perfect time to craft a recipe for success. Today’s consumers are inundated with advertisements, demanding that brands stand out. This is where the magic of creative solutions come into play. By thinking beyond traditional billboards, you can create truly immersive experiences that resonate deeply with shoppers.

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Specsavers Dundrum Mill Pond Stunt

Research underscores the effectiveness of impactful and unconventional OOH, which can drive up to 7x higher brand recall compared to standard media. These creative solutions don’t just elevate brand recognition by 5.9%, but also amplify emotional responses by an average of 120% and boost purchase intent by a substantial 176%. Digital OOH takes this a step further, enabling brands to deliver tailored messages dynamically and programmatically, achieving a 32% increase in brain response by displaying contextually relevant content.

OOH is EFFECTIVE at reaching back-to-school shoppers

Irish consumer confidence is on the rise this month – marking it the first uptick since January, signalling an opportune moment for brands to leverage Out of Home (OOH) advertising to effectively reach back-to-school shoppers. This positive shift indicates increased consumer optimism regarding spending and economic outlook. OOH plays a pivotal in driving consideration, particularly for items such as clothing (34%), footwear (35%) and tech (25%), which see rapid purchasing decisions within a day of exposure to an OOH ad.

JD Sports Campaign

Retail environments naturally spur consumer action, with OOH ads prompting 25.5% of consumers to discuss brands with family and friends, 21.6% to research a product on their mobile phone, and 15.1% to make a purchase. Point-of-sale ads further catalyse both in-store visits and online shopping, with 58% of consumers likely to visit a physical and 59% to shop online post-exposure.

Identifying the optimal OOH formats to capture back-to-school shoppers requires a nuanced understanding of their unique purpose. Roadside formats excel in raising awareness (+8%), while transport ads are the most liked advert (64%), and digital formats are effective in driving bottom-funnel metrics (57%). Each format serves a distinct role in engaging and influencing consumers throughout their purchasing journey.

SUSTAINABLE OOH

But OOH advertising is not only about reaching your audience – it’s the medium that gives back to communities. When planning your campaign, consider using sustainable practices such as opting for eco-friendly transportation methods like electric buses and adopting sustainable printing methods to minimise landfill waste. Additionally, ensure your digital campaigns are powered by renewable energy sources and that digital screens are powered down at night.

Why should we care? It matters to consumers, with 82% willing to stop buying from brands perceived as unethical. It’s also crucial for business success, as 72% of investors screen for sustainability risks. Furthermore, sustainability is significant for attracting talent, with one-third of GenZ rejecting jobs with poor sustainability credentials. Clients are also prioritising sustainability, with 43% of brands making it a key priority in their marketing strategy, up from 26% in 2021.

Sustainability

As we approach the back-to-school season, it’s essential for brands to leverage the power of Out of Home (OOH) advertising to connect with consumers in meaningful ways. By focusing on the ACES – Audience, Creative, Effective, and Sustainable – you can craft campaigns that not only capture attention but also drive action and foster positive brand associations. With consumer confidence on the rise, there’s no better time to think OOH’s ACES to ensure your media plan delivers this back-to-school. Reach out to a member of your Talon team to learn more.

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This summer is jam-packed with fixtures and what better way to reach sports fans in the right context than with precisely targeted, data-fuelled digital OOH (DOOH).

Head of Programmatic, Nicola Fox, uncovers how advancements in the OOH space are helping brands connect more effectively with sports fans this summer. Our collaboration with PepsiCo is a shining example of a brand effectively leveraging best in class targeting capabilities to speak directly to their audiences with content they care about.

Read the article on The Media Leader.

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As digital marketers adapt to a post-cookies world, Emily Alcorn, Head of Effectiveness at Talon, explains how Out of Home advertising, with its innovative use of data and dynamic content, sets the standard for effective, targeted campaigns.

Read the article on Campaign UK.

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Talon has received All-In Champion status in the UK, reflecting our commitment to fostering a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace. All In is the industry initiative created by the Advertising Association, the IPA, and the ISBA to improve inclusion and representation within UK advertising. 

Adopting the All-In Action Plan 

Our recognition as All-In Champions is a testament to our comprehensive adoption of the All-In Action Plan across eight necessary actions: Black Talent, Disabled Talent, Social Mobility, Women, Asian Talent, Older Talent, Mental Health, and LGBTQ+. This underscores Talon’s dedication to creating an environment where every individual feels valued, supported, and able to thrive. 

Talon’s Belong Cog led the All-In Champion submission and has spearheaded our journey to All-In Champions. The Belong Cog, composed of Talon employees, is central to shaping our internal working practices, policies, and recruitment strategies. It ensures that Talon remains an inclusive and welcoming place for all, actively working to increase access for underrepresented groups within the media sector and improve the employee experience. 

Talon’s ‘Charter for Change’ reinforces our commitment to inclusivity through a top-down approach, ensuring adoption and accountability at every level of our business. As proud MEFA and Creative Access members, we continue to push forward initiatives that promote diversity and inclusivity within our industry. 

Sunday Times Best Places to Work 

In addition to our All-In Champion status, Talon was recently named one of the Sunday Times Best Places to Work, an accolade voted for by our employees. This recognition highlights the positive and supportive culture we have cultivated at Talon, making it a great place to work. 

Our DEI journey is ongoing. We are committed to continuous improvement and ensuring that everyone at Talon feels they truly belong. 

If you are interested in working at Talon, view our job openings here 

Summer’s finally here – the season of sunny weather, or so we’d like to think! It’s that time of year when outdoor events are in full swing, and audiences are always OUT OF HOME. Despite the proven effectiveness of Out of Home (OOH) advertising, several misconceptions persist. Numerous studies have shown how impactful OOH can be, yet outdated myths continue to cloud its true potential.

It’s time to set the record straight, debunk these myths, and expose the real truths about OOH’s year-round impact.

THE PROVEN POWER OF OOH ADVERTISING

OOH advertising has consistently proven itself as a powerful tool for brand visibility and engagement. Recent research from our DOOH Aces reveals that nearly 70% of respondents pay attention to DOOH ads across various environments. Moreover, over 40% of respondents are more likely to engage with a diverse range of DOOH ads and formats.

Caroline Decourcy, our Insights Director, emphasises “OOH advertising continues to demonstrate its effectiveness by reaching diverse audiences with impactful messages that resonate. With the evolution of DOOH, what was once primarily a brand-building medium now drives consideration and action, making OOH a versatile channel capable of achieving multiple objectives in a brand’s media mix”.

DEBUNKING THE MYTHS

Myth 1: “Everyone Goes Away in the Summer”

To clear up the confusion: Yes, people do jet off during the summer months, but here’s the kicker – people are travelling throughout the year at nearly the same levels. The only noticeable dip? That tends to be around the Winter months.

International Travel

Our consumer behaviour research this year reveals interesting insights. Despite the perception of widespread holidays, only ½ are planning a vacation this year. The 45-54 age group shows the highest inclination to travel. However, our countries beauty might be a factor as well, with 28% of respondents opting to stay in Ireland. Among them, 16–17-year-olds will be enjoying a local summer. Financial considerations are also shaping travel plans, with the 25-34 age bracket favouring staycations over international travel.

And with our nights beginning earlier and ending later – according to Hospitality Ireland, we now prefer going out in the early evening, and with the government considering legislation to extend nightclub hours – there really is a grand “aul stretch” in the evening. Meaning audiences are always OUT OF HOME.

Myth 2: “Summer campaigns lack creativity”

If you think summer campaigns are snooze-fests, THINK AGAIN! We’ve had multiple campaigns active throughout the summer that have captured consumer engagement. Here are a couple of standout examples:

Specsavers: Driving Appointments with Real-Time Data

To drive appointments at key moments, Specsavers executed a campaign around smarter planning and data-driven content. The strategy included:

This approach was so successful that it won gold at both the Media Awards and the Digital Media Awards.

Lynx: Launching their Bold Fragrance Range

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Most recently, Lynx took a bold approach to launch their fine fragrance range through a variety of special executions:

Summer campaigns aren’t just about playing it safe – they’re about being bold! With everyone in a good mood attending events and concerts, it’s prime time to connect. Summer rivals Christmas in events and opportunities. Break free from the billboards, dominate spaces and make OOH a more immersive experience.

Myth 3: “Summer campaigns are ineffective”

Hold onto your sunscreen, folks! OOH doesn’t melt away in the summer heat. In fact, OOH and DOOH are top picks among global consumers, commanding attention with their larger-than-life presence. According to Kantar’s latest study, there’s a 90% correlation between channels that grab consumers’ attention and the ones they prefer. Away with digital distractions – Consumers love in-person ad experiences, making campaigns seven times more impactful when they resonate.

But here’s the kicker: shutting down your brand strategies during the summer might dim your long-term brand metrics. Keep those campaigns running to build your brand and spark future demand. Peter Field’s research backs this up: brands that maintained or boosted media spend during a downturn saw a 63% stronger ROI and a 60% year-on-year growth.

Myth 4: “There are Better Channels to Spend Budget On”

Sure, there are plenty of media channels vying for your attention, but what’s better than investing in a medium that gives back to its community and serves as an ad platform for brands?

Sustainabile Medium

OOH operates in the public sphere, carrying with it an inherent responsibility to positively impact our local communities and environments. At Talon, we’re committed to helping brands create more sustainable campaigns. According to a recent Outsmart UK study, OOH emits less carbon per impression than any other measured media – comprising only 3.3% of UK ad power consumption and under 3.5% of its carbon footprint.

In this blog, we’ve busted through the myths surrounding Out of Home (OOH), proving its effectiveness and creativity even under the summer sun. OOH doesn’t just survive – it thrives, grabbing attention and creating memorable brand moments. We’ve debunked misconceptions about summer travel and showcased standout campaigns such as Specsavers and Lynx, proving OOH’s power year-round.

Choosing OOH isn’t just smart – it’s impactful and responsible. It’s a medium that gives back. As we navigate summer 2024, don’t get burnt by myths. Ensure your brand is fully covered with OOH.

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This June, Talon and Grand Visual are supporting the #RightTalent initiative at Cannes.  #RightTalent is sending 11 young people to attend the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity as part of its mission to call for more diversity, equity and inclusion at the annual gathering.

#RightTalent is led by Digilearning, an official partner of Cannes Lions’ Equity, Representation and Accessibility programme.

Digilearning is a charity that helps young people find fulfilling careers in the digital and creative industries. They are working with four other organisations on the #RightTalent scheme. They are: The Amos Bursary, Mobo Trust/Mobolise, the Rio Ferdinand Foundation and The Marketing Academy Foundation.

#RightTalent is calling on the industry to “walk to talk” when it comes to diversity by providing mentors, pathways to job roles such as work experience and offering jobs to young talent from under-represented backgrounds.

Talon and Grand Visual have pledged our support alongside companies including Accenture and VaynerMedia.

The 11 candidates chosen to attend Cannes Lions will take part in a leadership acceleration programme. At the festival itself, the young talent will meet senior leaders through attending panels, mentoring sessions and roundtables featuring organisations that are supporting #RightTalent.

Other training includes an online bootcamp before the festival that provides tips and advice on confidence, networking and what to expect at Cannes Lions.Top of Form

Read The Media Leader to find out more.

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Pakistan – 10th June 2024 – Talon, the pioneering global independent Out of Home (OOH) agency, today announced its partnership with Raeem International to revolutionize the OOH media landscape in Pakistan. The partnership will see Raeem International become a Talon partner agency to accelerate major opportunities for Pakistan OOH across key markets. 

Combining Talon’s global OOH expertise – facilitating campaigns in over 100 markets – and Raeem International’s 12 years of successful experience in the local outdoor industry, offers brands and marketers a wealth of resources and best practices expertise in Pakistan. As a Talon partner agency, Raeem International will have a multi-market campaign launch capability for Pakistan marketers. 

This collaboration aims to redefine the landscape of outdoor advertising in Pakistan, enabling Pakistani brands to have data driven, insight-based Out of Home campaigns with the best-in-class creativity locally and globally. 

Salman Amjad, CEO of Raeem International said “This was long overdue for our industry. The Pakistani OOH industry must catch up fast with the changing trends that are happening globally. Today’s consumers are more connected, informed and mobile, and with their omni-channel presence we must become more data-driven in understanding our audiences better and making our campaigns sharper and relevant.  

Our partnership with Talon will certainly go a long way in bringing the best tools to the Pakistani marketers who are at the cusp of trying to embrace the fast changing and interconnected media landscape.”

Melanie Lindquist, Managing Director, Talon Asia-Pacific said, “We are thrilled to welcome Raeem International as the exclusive Talon Partner agency for Pakistan. This is an important collaboration and a critical step in Talon’s continued expansion in Asia Pacific. Our connected capabilities will provide ground-breaking data-backed OOH strategy to Pakistani brands fueling growth in and outside the market.  

This collaboration also creates an exceptional opportunity for global brands and marketers to work with a trusted team when expanding into the Pakistani market. Pakistan is one of the most exciting OOH markets and we look forward to sharing our knowledge and best practices to create effective, data-driven OOH campaigns with best-in-class creativity.” 

Talon, the global independent Out of Home (OOH) agency, today announced the appointment of Ryan Laul as its North American CEO. Laul will lead the continued growth of Talon’s business in North America, assuming the role on June 23, 2024. Reporting into Sue Frogley, Group CEO, Laul will join Talon’s global board.

Laul is a seasoned OOH media executive with an excellent track record of delivering growth and overseeing commercial investment across all media disciplines. He brings a wealth of OOH and Digital experience, joining Talon from Omnicom where he spent the last 13 years, initially as  President of Outdoor Media Group, the largest OOH specialist in North America, managing OOH spend across over 200 clients, including 8 of the top 12 OOH spenders in the US.    Most recently he served as President of OMnet, Omnicom’s principal investment group.

Under Laul’s leadership, Omnicom executed the largest data-driven OOH campaign, integrated mobile audience data into fundamental planning and buying, developed the largest demand-side resource for DOOH media and became the first company ever to establish a cinema upfront with the nation’s largest supplier.

Before that he started his OOH career at Zenith Media and then moved to Outdoor Vision/ Posterscope where he spearheaded the Digital Division – Hyperspace.  

Laul also sits on the board of directors of the Advertising Club of New York, helping to provide leadership in connecting the OOH industry with young professionals and previously sat on the Agency Advisory Boards of the OAAA, DPAA and Geopath.

According to recent data released by the OAAA, Out of home (OOH) advertising revenue increased 6.8% in the first quarter of 2024 compared to the previous year, accounting for $1.94 billion. This is a continuing growth trend based on the medium’s growth trajectory and increased revenue reported in 2023.

Sue Frogley, Group CEO, said: “Ryan is a values-driven business leader with exceptional strategic capabilities.   I am delighted to have someone of Ryan’s caliber with deep Out of Home and Digital experience leading our North America business.  I look forward to working with Ryan and our teams to deliver Talon’s next chapter of growth.”

Ryan Laul said: “Out of Home has long been my passion and I cannot wait to return to this exciting industry. Talon has an innovative and evolving business model in North America and I look forward to not only enabling Talon to realize its full potential as the leading OOH Agency in North America but secure the medium’s role in the broader advertising ecosystem and propel the industry forward.”

Stewart Easterbrook, Chairman, said “Following rigorous selection processes I am thrilled to have both Sue and Ryan join Talon later this month.  Their strength and experience leading global media businesses will deliver great results on both sides of the pond.  I am hugely excited for them to join and to work together to drive the ambition of Talon and deliver business performance.”

DOOH ACES (1)

The DOOH landscape has grown and evolved more than we could have ever anticipated. Despite its success. DOOH has had its fair share of challenges around measurement and share of voice.  

Understanding the potential of the channel, and to bridge the gap between the launch of industry research, Talon identified the need for some robust research which would focus on what DOOH can deliver once added to the OOH media mix.  

The study identified some interesting findings which we have accumulated into the key areas, presented as the ACES of DOOH: ATTENTION, CREATIVE & EFFECTIVE.

Attention 

Attention and attentive reach have become an important currency in measuring OOH. Almost 70% of respondents agree that they pay attention to DOOH Ads, consistent across various environments.  This study explored the relationship between attention and different points of a consumers journey, such as travelling by bus (39%), walking around a city/town (37%) or visiting a shopping mall (35%).  With all results lending to the fact that consumers are spending more time OOH and are more likely to notice OOH more when in a relaxed state of mind. 

The research also provided some interesting insights around engagement. Over 40% of respondents are likely to engage with a diverse range of DOOH ads and formats.  

Creative: 

The possibilities for creativity on DOOH formats are limitless, and investment by media owners has given rise to best-in-class quality screens displaying ads optimally. In fact, 50% of respondents agreed that relevant DOOH ads with a distinct design will capture their attention more effectively than other ads. 

Additionally, 34% indicate that motion is a crucial factor in driving attention and engagement, agreeing that they notice an OOH ad more with movement. furthermore, rewards offered and clear information about the product/service also aid in generating attention and engagement. 

Effective: 

The final “ace” and most compelling we’d argue is the effectiveness of DOOH. There is no doubt that DOOH is effective but putting some hard-hitting results behind it is key! 

Over ½ of respondents recalled seeing DOOH ads across a multitude of environments, following a similar pattern as with attention and engagement; there was consistent recall across formats and environments which supports previous research and learnings centred on multi format, multi environment effectiveness. 

The final element of the research piece focused on call to action and propensity to purchase. Over  40% consumers have taken a follow up action upon seeing a DOOH ad.   

Store visitations (in store visit & driving traffic online) and propensity to purchase yielded strong results. 37% of respondents agreed that they’d visit a store as a result of seeing a DOOH Ad.  Moreover, 40% agreed that DOOH would encourage them to purchase.   

DOOH is also more likely to drive traffic to an online store & store visitation than online ads (37% v 32%). On average, almost 40% of Irish consumers are likely to purchase the product or service they’ve seen advertised through a DOOH campaign.  

To summarise, DOOH’s role in generating awareness, recall, engagement, and attention is significant.  Our research has proven what we already know; DOOH is effective at driving key metrics across multi environments and initiating a call to action in many forms. 

This demonstrates that the role of OOH is evolving. Once viewed primarily as a brand-building medium, it can now drive consideration and action, positioning OOH as a channel capable of achieving multiple objectives in a brand’s marketing mix. 

SUNDAY TIMES BEST PLACES TO WORK WEB

The Sunday Times, powered by WorkL, has revealed the Best Places to Work in the UK for 2024 – and Talon have made the list! This nationwide workplace survey honours and celebrates Britain’s top employers – which number over 500 organisations across industries and sizes – and acknowledges the best workplaces for women, LGBTQIA+ community, disabled employees, ethnic minorities, younger and older workers, and wellbeing.

Read what The Sunday Times said about us below:

Talon – Bold ideas are encouraged at this London-based Out of Home agency, with its 182 UK staff, who receive twice-yearly appraisals, part of a people-focused philosophy. Active leadership motivates the diverse team, who are encouraged to go all out to impress. On-site massages are provided for all staff, who are tasked with completing 50 hours of training each year. Talon offers flexible working as well as glide time, allowing workers to fit their hours between 8am and 6.30pm.

Outside Thinking – Runs in the Talon Family

We’re proud that our employees have voted us as one of the Sunday Times Best Places to Work in the UK.

Talon is the destination where bold ideas are encouraged and our people are driven to be the differentiator. Kantar’s inclusion index ranks Talon at 76.7%, +6.7% vs all agencies and +26.7% vs UK benchmark. We provide two internships per year through Creative Access and our team receives mentoring and memberships through MEFA. Talon are accredited Living Wage employers.

Our people-first philosophy prioritises creating a workplace culture where everyone feels they belong. At Talon, we’re achieving this through our policies and practices that best support our staff. Some of our policies and practices include:

Embedded throughout our business is a culture for learning and progression. Talon’s learning and development framework has senior buy-in and filters through the entire business. There is great importance placed on training at Talon with all staff tasked with completing 50 hours each year. 360-degree feedback and appraisal systems take place twice a year and our employees benefit from role and salary benchmarking. The team also benefit from “Grow Together”, our cross-company mentoring platform, and our “Grow Academy”, an e-learning platform that includes recordings of all live sessions.

How the Best Places to Work survey works

The Sunday Times partnered with employee-experience platform WorkL to deliver fresh insights into what makes a Best Place to Work. The Sunday Times Best Places to Work awards survey uses 26 questions from WorkL’s employee engagement survey, developed by behavioural scientists, data analysts, psychologists, business leaders, academics and other independent parties to most accurately monitor employee engagement, wellbeing and discretionary effort in the workplace. To achieve a high overall engagement score, an organisation must score well across WorkL’s six-step framework:

1. Reward and Recognition

2. Instilling Pride

3. Information Sharing

4. Empowerment

5. Wellbeing

6. Job Satisfaction

Read the full list online – Best Places to Work 2024

If you are interested in working at Talon, view our job openings here