It is possible to run an out of home campaign without a social media element, but it’s become rare. Over the past five years, social media has gone from an unusual addition to a necessary one. Social networks can turn a local campaign into a national one. When people share photos of a funny billboard on Instagram or tweet about the “zombie” they just ran into on the streets of New York, the campaign takes on an entirely new dimension online. YouTube is particularly popular. Campaigns can rack up millions of views for a video of a stunt, which helps it live on online for weeks or even months after the out-of-home experience itself is over. It’s also easy to track the reach of a campaign that uses a certain hashtag across different social media networks. However, there can be a downside. When a campaign does not go as planned, advertisers hear about it on social media, and the campaign lives on perhaps longer than they might hope. Ashley Shipley, director of social media and online marketing at Matrix Media Services, talks to Media Life about why social media is vital to out of home, which advertisers have done it well, and how OOH ideas have evolved with the increase in social media usage.
When it comes to OOH a clear and concise message is best.
You have limited space, so as with social media, every character counts. When including a call to action in your OOH ad, the universal identity of those platforms through their branded icons is now enough to coach consumers with less and less verbiage.
The Twitter icon with your handle or hashtag is all users need. The same is true with Facebook, YouTube and even Google+. Consumers understand these platforms–sometimes better than the advertisers themselves. Lengthy URLs just aren’t necessary anymore.