Will Instagrammable OOH prove to be a game changer?

According to industry experts, Instagram Out Of Home provides a good opportunity for brands to target the youth or create customized campaigns

e4m by Anjali Thakur
Updated: Jun 25, 2019 8:32 AM

Social media has been influencing every facet of a person’s life and the need to document experiences online continues to increase. The trend has been growing by the day and brands have been quick to jump on this opportunity.


Outdoor advertising, in particular, has enjoyed the perks of social media. The term “Instagrammable billboards” was coined recently with reference to billboards that appeal to people who feel compelled to share these images on social media.


Spotify has been one prime example of this trend. The Spotify-Tinder campaign has generated a lot of social media buzz, thanks to their data-driven yet tongue-in-cheek approach. 


With more than 500 creatives across outdoor hoardings and digital banners targeting online and offline audiences, Spotify aimed to reach the growing millennial user base. With a quirky and fun execution, every campaign creative has been designed and adapted to instinctively connect with local user sentiments.


According to Alok Gupta, Director, Graphisads, “As a media, Instagram Out Of Home is still at a novice stage in India. It will take a lot of time to develop, though the media is very localized and not sure if all brands will catch the fancy of such media. Being highly localized in nature, it has a good value proposition since Outdoor is supposedly hyper-local. It can be a good proposition and a good opportunity for brands targeting youth to scale up or create customized campaigns.”


Digital advertising’s path to prominence began a decade ago with more traditional ad forms like TV, radio, print and outdoor seeing their cultural relevance deflate, both in attention and the shift in ad budget allocation. But as they realized that the consumers’ attention wasn’t stuck to one device or another, but constantly moving between media, brands and ads began to more effectively create work that complements itself across different platforms. With social media’s meteoric rise, the opportunity to use outdoor space to attract eyeballs with active engagements — like posting photos of billboards, posters, wall murals and digital installations — has strengthened.


Shailesh Loni, Assistant Vice President, Laqshya Media Group says, “In this new age, the media consumption pattern has completely changed. Youngsters today are online 24x7 and share almost everything on social media, which sometimes also goes viral. Instagrammable OOH can be a game changer, provided brands use them as a content-rich medium with consumer connect and not as a commodity. Brands should spend more time and energy on a medium which is non-intrusive and demands no commitment from its audience, but still passes on the message effectively.” 


“Billboard messaging getting onto social media and going viral will add value to the entire campaign objective and this value can be accounted as media earned and not bought,” Loni added.


According to Gaurav Chopra, Business Director - Activation & Events, Group M, advertisers have been using various online tools and platforms to reach the TG and posting of ads on Instagram is also not new. “It’s the way one packages the medium, one can charge a premium as this would reach to the right TG and eyeballs.”


Backing up Chopra’s statement, Karan Bhardwaj, MD and CEO, Kryp Media, said Instagrammable billboards are not a new thing and has been around for some time as different brands have used it for different purposes during the past year. “VR and AI-based billboards are changing the rules of engagement with its shock value and futuristic presentations. Consumers become the brand ambassadors as they share the content to a larger audience .This results in better brand recall and improved footfalls. Premium depends on the content used and place of installation.” 


In India, smart digital billboards or the digital out-of-home (DOOH) industry, worth Rs 100 crore, accounts for just 2 per cent of the overall out-of-home (OOH) media industry, according to a report by MAGNA, IPG Mediabrands’ research arm. At the end of 2017, there were approximately 1.2 lakh OOH ad units in the top 30 cities of India, of which around 1,000 screens located in Delhi and Mumbai airports were digitally enabled. The report predicts that DOOH will grow to 5 per cent of the total OOH industry by 2023.

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