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Published on August 3rd, 2020 | by Steve Nicklin

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Nielsen Research: DOOH Engages Consumers and Drives Activations

Steve Nicklin

Steve Nicklin vice president of marketing at OAAA


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OAAA’s latest Nielsen studies find digital OOH produces high levels of engagement, consumer awareness and prompts consumer action. In fact, the research found consumers who notice directions from a DOOH are highly likely to visit a business and over 80% will make a purchase.

The two new Nielsen DOOH studies examined travelers in top markets across the U.S. and their exposure to digital out of home (DOOH) advertising formats including billboards, street furniture, airports and place-based (top 30 markets surveyed); and rail/subway/train/taxi transit (top six transit markets surveyed).

The results confirmed nearly two-thirds of DOOH viewers have engaged in at least one measured action after seeing a digital billboard. These actions included visiting an advertiser’s website, searching for them online, visiting a store or restaurant, visiting or posting to a social media site or blog, and more. The research also found DOOH prompts over half of consumers to take actions on their mobile devices.

The Nielsen study reiterates the power of DOOH to drive measurable and meaningful brand value for advertisers.  In today’s complex and rapidly changing marketplace, DOOH not only builds enormous consumer awareness and engagement, it also offers flexibility and immediacy that is even more valuable to brands in the current environment. Like all forms of OOH, consumers notice DOOH, engage with it and ultimately respond by making purchases.

Printed OOH campaigns provide important 24/7 brand exposure and permanence, while DOOH can add another layer of opportunity. The digital platform allows brands to quickly adapt by providing the ability to optimize creative messaging for a target audience based on a variety of triggers.

Key highlights of the studies include:

Among consumers noticing digital billboards

  • 52% noticed digital billboards that gave directions to a store, business, or restaurant
  • 57% of them immediately visited the business after viewing the ad
  • 93% of those visiting the business made a purchase
  • 52% of viewers with smartphones have engaged in actions on their mobile device after seeing a digital billboard in the past year

Among consumers noticing digital street furniture

  • 51% noticed digital street furniture ads that gave directions to a store, business, or restaurant
  • 65% of them immediately visited the business after viewing the ad
  • 92% of those visiting the business made a purchase
  • 62% of viewers with smartphones have engaged in actions on their mobile device after seeing a digital street furniture ad in the past year

Among consumers noticing digital rail/subway/train transit

  • Over 50% noticed digital transit ads that gave directions to a store, business, or restaurant
  • 48% of them immediately visited the business after viewing the ad
  • Over 80% of those visiting the business made a purchase
  • Approximately 60% of viewers with smartphones have engaged in actions on their mobile device after seeing a digital transit ad in the past year

Among consumers noticing digital place-based

  • 45% noticed digital street furniture that gave directions to a store, business, or restaurant
  • 70% of them immediately visited the business after viewing the ad
  • 89% of those visiting the business made a purchase
  • 54% of viewers with smartphones have engaged in actions on their mobile device after seeing a digital billboard in the past year

The full reports, which include granular data on mobile billboards, airports and taxis, are available on OAAA’s website: Nielsen DOOH – Billboards, Street Furniture, Place-Based and Airports; and Nielsen DOOH – Transit.



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