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What in the heck is Out-of-Home marketing?

By Kristen Nauss

A handful of businesses have been praised recently for the creative and engaging Out-of-Home marketing (OOH) experiences they’ve provided for the public.  Amazon delivered 25-foot boxes to various cities in an effort to gain more buzz and exposure for Prime Day , a Finnish newspaper took over close to 300 displays to celebrate press freedom, and LG offered free laundry services to Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival attendees.

In a world where everything is defined as either “traditional marketing” or “digital marketing”, who is this new player called Out-of-Home? We get it, it’s not in our homes. (Thank you, Captain Obvious.)

Come to find out, Out-of-Home marketing (or media, or advertising) is not a new category. Instead, outdoor media (read: billboards) has undergone something of a rebranding, with additional types of media placements added into the mix.

Billboards used to be lumped into a big marketing bucket called Traditional Media and had to share space in a marketer’s budget with TV, print, and radio. They now share the OOH title with many other media such as buses, gas stations, restaurants, and experiential placements like those first three examples in this blog post.  How are theses all related?  Other than being avenues for marketing in general, they’re all part of the OOH umbrella, with specialized categories: Traditional Out of Home, Non-Traditional OOH, and Experiential / Event Media / Mobile OOH.

Let’s look at quick breakdown of the placements included in each category.

Traditional Out-of-Home:

  • Billboards (static, digital, on the sides of buildings)
  • Airport Media (as you walk down the concourse)
  • Buses (outside and inside)
  • Commuter Rail & Subway (inside, outside and upside down…think ceiling and floor, too)
  • Posters (smaller static and digital)
  • Bus Shelters & Street Furniture (Bus stops, street kiosks, etc.)
  • Taxis

Non-Traditional OOH:

  • Cinema (on the screen)
  • Fitness clubs
  • Gas Stations/Convenience Stores (videos at the pump)
  • Laundromat Advertising
  • Mall Advertising
  • Pizza Boxes

Experiential / Event Media / Mobile OOH

  • Street Teams
  • Scooters
  • Segways
  • Branded Food Trucks
  • Mobile Billboards (Have you seen bicycles dragging one behind? Yeah, it’s a thing now.)
  • Pop-up Stores (E.g. that laundry service from LG at Bonnaroo)
  • Projection Media
  • Wrapped Vehicles
  • 3D Projection Mapping

So when you compete in a 5K and head over to Skratch Labs’ expo table to check out their new energy bars – that’s OOH.  When Taco Tuesday hits and you hunt down grub from What The Truck on a city street – that’s OOH.  And when you get a flyer handed to you from a person walking in a parade – that’s OOH.

I hope this has clarified a bit what qualifies as Out-of-Home marketing (and what doesn’t) – and heck, maybe you can save this blog post to use as a cheat sheet in Marketing 101 class.

 



Kristen Nauss is the Director of Sales and Marketing at Extend Your Reach. She helps clients build multi-channel marketing strategies and oversees business development for Reach. She brings more than 20 years of strategic communications experience to her role. Email Kristen or connect with her on LinkedIn.

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