Welcome to The Outdoor Media Centre

Launch, Outdoor

This week, the Outdoor Advertising Association of Great Britain has rebranded itself as the Outdoor Media Centre. Why did it do so?

The frivolous reason might be so that we could have a name you can answer the phone with. But actually the main reason is one of repositioning. Every organisation needs a focus and ours will be proactive approach to advertisers and their agencies at the inter-media planning process.

Effectively the idea is that any media planner, or advertiser, thinking about a possible role for Outdoor will find reasons to support that idea. Typically that will be relevant photos, case studies, category argument, research, consumer insight and video.

As an agency planner you are generally pretty well served with information, especially if you have a planning and buying partner in one of the outdoor specialists and you can issue a brief for them to generate a list of candidate media.

But what if there is no brief? What if you are just at the blue sky stage? What if it’s just concepts and big picture stuff? Comms planners especially operate comfortably in this space, and we want to put our best foot forward in helping define a role for outdoor within more campaigns. Brand count is growing well in outdoor, but we are ambitious for more.

So we decided to present a grab-bag of different material, off the shelf and ready to go. This body of material will expand and enrich as we acquire more case studies. We’ll also get better at anticipating what planners might want in the outdoor or the inter-media planning discipline.

In creating this resource centre and preparing for the launch, I am very grateful to say, we have had a fantastic level of support from the industry . Not just from my colleagues Bill and Jali but from the Council marketing committee, from the many non-Council members, and from the industry at large.

The IPA kindly supplied Touchpoints 3 data, Taxi Media and Ubiquitous supplied outdoor media for the launch, as did CBS, so that we could walk the walk, as well as just talking the talk.

Most importantly, senior planners from agencies, a fair few of them at board level, stepped up to support us with their own observations about the power of outdoor. They each listed something different they liked about the medium, and illustrated it with examples from their own portfolios. You’ll find those on the website too.

We’ve just presented the revenues for the full year 2010, which makes encouraging reading. Revenue growth of 12.5%, and within that even better growth from digital, which has topped £100m for the first time. One pound in every eight spent on outdoor is now spent in digital media, and those screens keep proliferating into new sectors – airports, malls, roadside, railway stations, subways and forecourt convenience stores.

So there we are. A new year, a new name, a new start. Lots to go after, and a huge sense of anticipation all round. Cynics might say it can only go one way from here, but for me it doesn’t get any better than this.

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