Digital out-of-home (DOOH) | 04 min read

Digital out-of-home (DOOH) advertising trends | 2020

If you would like to read our most recent DOOH trends report then follow the link!

Digital out-of-home (DOOH) came of age in 2019. The evidence is undeniable.

According to PQ Media, DOOH accounted for 28.3 of all out-of-home (OOH) ads in 2019 and this is predicted to rise to 38.3% by 2023. What’s more,  DOOH was the main driver of growth in OOH advertising worldwide in 2019 – which was 10% or $16.75 billion for the year!

And this year? Well, digital out-of-home looks set to go one step further in 2020, as out-of-home networks expand digital signage options, plus more brands are now using the technology instore. Here’s the DOOH trends we think marketers need to keep an eye on during 2020:

  1. Further development of programmatic DOOH
  2. The growing profitability of DOOH
  3. Remembering it’s all about location location, location!
  4. Creativity and digital out-of-home

Yet, before we delve into what the future holds, what makes digital out-of-home so special…

Why are so many brands choosing DOOH?

Firstly, out-of-home advertising offers a brand safe environment, with unparalleled viewability. Unless something blocks the screen, ads are 100 percent viewable to customers. What form of ad inventory offers a similar promise?

Secondly, DOOH is the ultimate form of OOH advertising: ads are twice as likely to be seen and are 2.5 times more impactful than static OOH ads. Add data feeds, video, and developing programmatic capabilities to the mix, and digital out-of-home is an unbeatable offering.

Here’s what we think will be shaping digital out-of-home advertising over the next 12 months and beyond…

1. Further development of programmatic DOOH

Programmatic is still developing with DOOH advertising – and it didn’t it quite develop as expected in 2019. Yet, we fully expect it to advance further in 2020.

Indeed, Programmatic DOOH is the vision of bringing real-time bidding to DOOH. This is where an advertiser can bid for an audience on a marketplace (much like in display). This is not something the industry is currently able to deliver.

However, in the UK changes are happening. Some of the out-of-home ad industry’s biggest players have signalled their intent to deliver more programmatically executed campaigns in real-time by partnering with Adsquare, a mobile-first data exchange with integrations with some major DMPs.

This technology enables advertisers to choose DOOH ads, like digital ad inventory, with poster frame locations based on audience, as well as spatial and movement data.

Though a note of caution! While, this is a step in the right direction, programmatic DOOH in 2020 will ultimately be what advertisers want and need once more digital signage is made accessible as digital ad inventory, across a variety of ad tech providers.

2. The growing profitability of DOOH

Digital out-of-home is starting to offer brands brilliant ROI. Results from a recent Talon and Benchmarketing study, of 112 brands over five years, found that DOOH delivers “strongly” against its premium price point.

The study indicates that when performing an OOH campaign, and using DOOH as part of it, there is an incremental return on investment of 46p for every £1 spent. Thus, there was an increase in profit when campaigns used a higher share of DOOH.

What’s more, if using advanced agnostic ad creators, such as Bannerflow Studio, you can create digital signage ads at the sametime as your display and social campaigns. Further improving the ROI for your brand.

3. Remembering it’s all about location location, location!

Sounds obvious, right?! Wrong. In the rush to develop and get DOOH advertising up and running, some brands and agencies have forgotten a fundamental element of OOH: location!

The very best OOH ads interact and compliment their environment through copy, imagery and creative endeavour. Innovation coach at SKY, Dino Burbidge, gets to the heart of the matter in an interview with The Drum. “[They] sit in the heart of the community. If you start going down the same route as online did, you tend to start having generic adverts that move away from smart local thinking”.

Just like the best best dynamic creative optimisation (DCO) campaigns in online display, generic ads do not connect with viewers. No matter the sheer size of your ad! DOOH offers the opportunity for the easy use of location data or tailoring of OOH ads – not lazy mass- production of the same ad.

4. Creativity and digital out-of-home

Early adopters of digital out-of-home produced some of the most creative and effective ads in the industry. Yet, somewhere along the line as more brands and programmatic players came into the DOOH market, everything got a bit bland and samey. Just like display advertising, “easier to produce” doesn’t necessarily result in better or more effective ads.

2020 we believe will see brands remember that DOOH is a completely different channel. The same ad online (or static and in print) does not translate automatically into an engaging DOOH ad. DOOH is one of the most creative media outlets available for marketers and the addition of actionable data opens up new possibilities to be creatively effective.

Indeed, according to Neil Morris, founder and CEO of Grand Visual & QDOT: “dynamically optimised creative goes hand in hand with better audience targeting and programmatic trading […] these three will move DOOH effectiveness and efficiency to a completely different level”. DOOH, much like display advertising, will adopt DCO strategies to produce ads that are best creative, at the best moment, in the best location.


In 2020, digital out-of-home looks set to further its status among digital advertisers. However, ensuring your out-of-home ads sync with your display and social ads should be a priority.

Using the Bannerflow creative management platform marketers can produce display advertising for both the smallest and biggest screens via its ad creator, Creative Studio. Exporting and creating files for digital signage has never been simpler!

If you would like to find out about the different ad formats you can create in Bannerflow, then take a look here. Or, if you would like to know more about the Bannerflow CMP then get in touch.

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