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OOH Interviews

Sanjeev Gupta

Managing Director | 11 Jul 2013

We strongly lack standardisation of price for an outdoor inventory. There are many small players in the industry that can’t be regulated. Illegal hoardings, unregulated banners, and clutter displays are some of the obstacles for the OOH industry.

Over the years, Sanjeev Gupta, Managing Director, Global Advertisers has been the backbone of progressive enterprise at the company. He has in many ways revolutionised the Indian outdoor industry through his ideas on branding and communication for products and services that have succeeded in arresting the attention of consumers while driving the message home effectively.

In conversation with exchange4media’s Priyanka Nair, Gupta speaks at length about the challenges facing the outdoor industry, the trends that will shape the industry, digital OOH and more...

Q. What are the most important factors while connecting with the audience through OOH?

OOH offers multiple benefits to a brand keeping in mind the following objectives:
OOH establishes communication between a brand and its consumer directly
Increases brand recall value
Acts as a supportive medium to TV, print, radio and digital media
Cost efficiency of the medium
Offers widest range of inventories
Infinite possibilities of innovation

Q. How different is OOH today compared to what it was a few years back?

Innovation and digitisation have taken lead from the past. There are more options to choose from for your brand promotion. Today, we give importance to minute details, emphasise on better monitoring system, and offer multi-city penetration for brands. Large infrastructure and better placement of outdoor inventories have also fuelled the growth of OOH advertising.

Q. As a media owner, what are the challenges that you are facing from the regulation side?

The Government puts heavy taxes and strict timeliness on us, but doesn’t provide any assistance.

Q. Other than government regulations being a deterrent in the development of the OOH industry, what are the other disadvantages that you can think of?

We strongly lack standardisation of price for an outdoor inventory. There are many small players in the industry that can’t be regulated. Illegal hoardings, unregulated banners, and clutter displays are some of the obstacles for the OOH industry.

Q. What do you think needs to be done to push the Indian OOH industry forward?

Firstly, we need to consolidate our properties, invest on research and development, install monitoring systems, incorporate transparent business policies for advertisers, and offer value added services to clients so that they stick to outdoor advertising.

Q. How would you compare India’s OOH industry to the global one?

Well, they are still way ahead of us; digital billboards, digital screens, extensive usage of neon lightning, and multi-dimension displays are rare to find in India. Though the India outdoor industry is growing, we need to redefine our approach. Now, it’s all about sharing experience of good and innovative work in outdoor advertising.

Q. What you think the penetration of digital OOH will bring to the industry?

As of now, an India consumer notices billboards. It is still the most popular format of outdoor advertising. However, digital OOH inventories are also included in the promotional plans, which are located at airports, shopping malls, railway platforms, waiting areas of offices and so on. Digital OOH is more consumer engaging and interactive. So, there is huge potential for digital OOH in India.

Q. What are the major trends you see that will shape 2013?

We have witnessed growing demand for hoardings from the film fraternity and builders. Mixed media plan, including hoardings, bus shelters and pole kiosks are highly popular. Large size hoardings are being given importance. Tier II and tier III cities are also getting preference in the marketing plans.

Q. Are any infrastructure or regulatory changes expected or you are hoping for in 2013 that will impact the industry?

I wish to see clutter-free hoarding spaces in Mumbai. Illegal hoardings and banners should be completely banned. The local municipal corporations and outdoor associations should have transparent policies.

Q. What are areas that Global Advertisers will be focusing on in the months ahead?

After monsoon, it will be festival time and there will be a lot of activations. So, our focus will be mainly on providing best of our services to our clients. We have roped in Rudolf Fernando as our National Head of Sales. Our regional teams are expanding our reach in tier II and III cities. Our schemes of Barter & Rotational offer an affordable plan to even a small local retailer. We have added large size hoardings in prominent locations such as Thane, Sion and Bandra to our portfolio. Our marketing team is gearing up for the festival season time with fresh approach and new ideas. Moreover, we have introduced several value added services such as direct mailing to 10 lakh people, social media marketing, mobile marketing and PR support.

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