The advent of Ganesh Chaturthi usually announces the start of the festival season, which is what usually pushes advertising spends in the second half of the year. This year, according to outdoor experts we spoke with, the outdoor industry has faced tough competition as advertisers look at new mediums like digital to talk to clients. According to an executive at one digital agency, the festival season would pick up steam from Diwali and Dussehra and the going has been slow during for Ganesh Chaturthi.
“Advertisers are looking for more engaging and effective ways of reaching out to consumers and this is affecting outdoor advertising,” said the head of one outdoor agency who did not wish to be named. “There is interest and advertising on outdoor is happening but due to the increasing interest in other mediums (like digital and mobile) outdoor has taken a hit,” he further added.
Rajiv Saxena, MD of Blue Ocean Media opined, “The launch of Reliance Jio and the upcoming launch of iPhone 7 bodes well for the outdoor advertising industry. We are expecting the telecom sector will pick up in the second half and this will have a positive impact on this sector.”
Yusuf Merchant, Associate VP at Kinetic World Wide also agreed that Ganesh Chaturthi festival heralds the beginning of the festive period. “Every year, we see out of home spends peak starting this time. This year also we can expect more brands to get active in the out of home space. Branding around Ganesh pandals, innovations and creative executions further enhances presence. Also, with very exciting launches coming up for the festivities around the corner, I look forward to a very promising second half of 2016."
However, the spokesperson of one of the largest outdoor agencies in the country was of the opinion that most advertisers concentrate on the Ganesh pandals rather than traditional outdoor for this period. This seems to be a sentiment felt by some of the outdoor ecosystem, though most agree that new launches by telecom and automobile during the period have provided an impetus to outdoor adex.
Despite different views on the advertising expenditure on OOH during the current Ganesh Chaturthi period, most outdoor experts we spoke with did agree that the second half of 2016 was shaping up to be a great period for this particular sector.
The Pitch Madison mid-year review of adex put the outdoor advertising sector to grow at 13 per cent, higher than TV, and with the festive season starting in full swing in the coming months, it might not be that difficult to imagine, despite what in some ways might appear to be not the most exciting start to the festive season.