Cheil Praises and Critiques DOOH

Cheil Media plans and buys all of Samsung’s OOH media, and Fiona FitzGibbon is head of media. She was speaking about ‘Why we love DOOH’. Cheil is passionate about the medium, which is growing rapidly; there are always new creative opportunities. Samsung is also a great advocate, using DOOH across all product categories – B2B products began to be advertised this year.

Samsung has been a tenant on Picadilly Circus (the UK’s Times Square!) for more than 20 years, said FitzGibbon, and has been growing more ambitious with its campaigns recently. For example, social media is being linked in and the public is being invited to generate content, as in the recent ’15 Sec Films’ and ‘My Hidden London’ campaigns. The core objective is to entertain via a brand experience.

Digital signage was key to the launch of the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge. Social media commentary around the phones was broadcast on screens close to where the updates were posted, the day after Samsung’s Unpacked event at MWC this year. This sometimes resulted in people seeing their own tweet on a sign, taking a picture of it and tweeting it, which was retweeted by Samsung – starting the whole circle again!

A treasure hunt was run across the UK when the S6 and S6 Edge went on sale. Live video streams from the phones were broadcast online in eight cities; people who could track the location down could search nearby for a golden ticket to win one of the handsets. It was probably Samsung’s most successful campaign so far, with just under 46 million impressions.

Outside of Samsung, Cheil has seen an ‘explosion’ of dynamic, live, data-driven campaigns.

On the other hand, there are reasons to not be so keen on DOOH.

  • Today media owners have brilliant, high-end screens – but use a legacy analogue process to get content to them. Rolling out campaigns can be “clunky and costly”. True investment is needed to bring content distribution back in line with the technologies that we have access to today.
  • FitzGibbon returned to Gregory’s earlier point about accountability. She said that this needs to match the data available now. It is not unreasonable to expect proof of posting, live delivery data and live reporting. We are still waiting on an industry standard with a shared voice.
  • The revenue model for DOOH is wrong. The two-week base price is the “wrong way” to use DOOH, which should be tied to merit of audience delivery, rather than space and network.
  • London is very – too – dominant in the sector. DOOH needs a national footprint to become more relevant by city and location.

Cheil’s creative team was asked for their thoughts on DOOH. They said that it is a great medium, enabling disruptive and engaging storytelling – but screen quality is inconsistent across the industry; lead-time set-ups are too long; and there are so many copy restrictions that consistency is “a nightmare”.

Partnerships and collaborations will help to push the boundaries of the industry, said FitzGibbon. She was also passionate about giving sales teams a better understanding of what their own assets can do, in order to hasten the entire process.

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