The outdoor advertising sector saw an increase in ad spends in the quarter ending September and is on track to register 7-8 per cent growth in 2015, said OOH owners and media agencies we spoke with.
According to OOH agency heads, the increase in ad spends could be attributed to a number of reasons. For example, Nabendu Bhattacharyya, MD of Milestone Brandcom says Q3 has been better because of spending by categories like mobile handsets, m-commerce and e-commerce and media and entertainment. “Previously, we have not seen the m-commerce category spend this strongly. I would say that ad spends have gone up by 20-25 per cent in July-September’15 as compared to the same period last year,” he said.
On similar lines, Sanjeev Gupta, MD at Global Advertisers, welcomed the positivity seen in the market in this quarter, claiming that the market had picked up momentum after a recessionary trend in Q2. He said that ad revenues for OOH would have increased in the range of 70-80 per cent in Q3 as compared to Q2. When asked about which categories have spent the most money, he singled out electronics, real estate, entertainment channels and event companies. “Even among e-commerce companies Amazon has clearly been the biggest spender. Apart from Amazon, there were just 2-3 others that have spent big, but Amazon has spent a lot of money on all mediums,” he said.
Noomi Mehta, Chairman and MD of Selvel also agreed that, overall, ad spends on OOH had increased across India with Mumbai and Delhi seeing a lot of spending and with Bangalore remaining steady. However, he pointed out that the ongoing tussle in Kolkata with the municipal corporation has caused clients to drop investments in outdoor. “We cannot understand what is going on in Kolkata. They (The municipal corporation) say that out of the 400 sites given to us, 250 are illegal. So even clients have lost interest and don’t want to advertise,” he explained.
On the other hand, Rajiv Saxena, MD of Blue Ocean Media, feels that the OOH sector will not grow till the inventory crunch being faced is addressed. “There has hardly been any new media or new inventory introduced for a long time. So long as the industry remains local it will not grow,” he said. Saxena, however, agreed that Q3’15 had been much better than Q3’14 due to government campaigns as well as spending by e-commerce sector even though some sectors like the film industry have not been doing any promotions on OOH for the past 6 months.