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Measuring Outdoor and Out-of-Home Digital Signage in 2023

white background banner billboard outdoor on cloud and sky

Out-of-home marketing is a great way to build brand awareness and increase your recognition quickly. The Nielsen out-of-home advertising study found that interviewees spent 25 hours a week in vehicles, and 33% of them proceeded to look for information on an advertiser after seeing an out-of-home ad.

It’s no secret that outdoor and out-of-home advertising are still one of the most powerful marketing methods. Nearly everyone is exposed to out-of-home ads since most people spend time away from home. From going to work and the supermarket to taking a walk or just jogging, we’re naturally susceptible to outdoor advertising.

However, to effectively measure the effectiveness of out-of-home advertising, you need to know how they can be used. For example, billboards are used to determine the distances from which the advertisement can be seen and how likely people are to see them when they pass through the area.

On the other hand, street furniture is placed on the street in proximity to pedestrians, so it is easily spotted by passing traffic. Street furniture advertising can be done at bus shelters, transit stations, and even shopping malls.

Measuring outdoor advertising used to be a challenge, but with advancements in both data and technology, marketers can now accurately measure their campaigns. It’s no longer impossible to track outdoor metrics and determine the effectiveness of your campaigns.

Here are seven ways to accurately measure out-of-home digital signage in 2023.

1. Monitoring Sales

Monitoring sales is the simplest and the most obvious way to measure how effective out-of-home advertising is. Simply look at sales figures before and after running the ad. If sales increase, the ad is likely working, and vice versa.

However, despite its straightforwardness, monitoring sales isn’t the most effective way, especially if your business is running advertisements on more than one campaign. For instance, if you have other campaigns running at the same time, say social media marketing, it might be hard to tell if it’s out-of-home advertising that attracted more customers.

2. Demographics

Observation or recent census data can provide demographic information about a particular area, helping in measuring out-of-home advertising. Demographics show how many people are being exposed to your message and who exactly is being exposed.

For example, with demographics, you can see who your products and services appeal to the most based on:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Income
  • Location

Knowing this helps you identify consumers that are most likely to buy your products and services. This can help you narrow down the potential audience for future advertisements. It’s advisable to put up your advertisement in densely populated areas to attract more potential customers.

3. Conducting Surveys

Surveys can be conducted through the distribution of questionnaires, asking questions, or observing to get direct consumer insights. When conducting surveys, you can ask questions such as:

  • Have you seen the billboard for the product?
  • How much did you like it?
  • Do you intend to take action on the message that you saw?

Conducting surveys is also important since you get direct feedback from consumers, helping you to understand their expectations and needs. In short, surveys can help you gather demographic and viewing habits information.

4. Visual Attention Research

You can conduct visual attention research using physical points that figure how far an ad can be seen. The purpose of this research is to determine a person’s likelihood of noticing the advertisement.

For example, infrared cameras and sensors can be used to track how many people are passing by a digital billboard, if they’re looking at it, and how long they pay attention to it.

Visual attention also measures how long people stay at that particular place either in traffic, or when waiting for the bus. For example, you can use eye-tracking technology to record the movement of the person’s eyes, revealing where exactly they were looking in the advert.

Note that this technique is mostly used on billboards to focus on the amount of attention that is paid to the elements within the ad.

5. Digital Trails

Digital trails such as cookies, social accounts, product links, and other information can be used to track the performance of out-of-home advertisements. For instance, they are used to determine the number of people following the business’s social media account or people clicking on the promo codes.

Digital trails can also include mobile data through geo-fencing, which maps an ad’s location and tracks people’s behavior using their smartphones.

Digital trails are a simple yet effective approach to measuring your out-of-home advertisement. They help you analyze traffic and conversations tied to your advertisement. For optimal results, set your business objectives, target the right audience, and measure your marketing activities.

6. Impression Measurements

Impression metrics are one of the best ways to track out-of-home advertising. With impressions, you can accurately measure the number of people that will walk past your advertisement and see its content.

Unlike in the past, where outdoor impressions focused on the number of people who could see an ad, today’s outdoor impressions focus on more reliable figures of people who actually noticed the advertisement. The more realistic outdoor impression measurements are informed by various techniques such as data modeling and analytics.

It’s good to note that if one person sees the advertisement five times it is counted as five impressions, and if five people see the ad all at once, it’s also counted as five impressions.

7. Performance Attribution

Performance attribution shows the units that performed better than others, proving ways to improve the outcome of the next campaign. It is used to analyze and explain the performance against a particular benchmark.

It involves tracking how many people are engaging with your digital signage and then attributing that engagement to a particular campaign, ad, or other pieces of content.

To do this, you’ll need to track how many people view each piece of content. You can do this using eye tracking, heat maps, or surveys to track how many people engaged with the content.

The goal here is to determine which displays are performing well, which ones aren’t performing as well as expected, and what factors might be contributing to those results.

Final Thoughts

In the world of digital out-of-home advertising, there are a number of metrics that you can use to evaluate your campaign performance, including but not limited to:

  • Engagement rates
  • Viewability
  • Impressions
  • Conversions

These metrics also allow you to understand your audience demographics and behavior, helping you optimize content and make informed business decisions.

The bottom line is to choose the method that works best for your brand and location. However, if you can combine some or all of the above tactics, the better and more effective your campaign will be.

The future of out-of-home advertisement is here and more measurable than ever. Simply follow the methods above to measure the impact of out-of-home advertisements on your business.

If you have any questions on how to measure outdoor and out-of-home digital signage in 2023, please contact us today.