Let’s talk programmatic DOOH: Insights from Adform

July 27, 2021Samantha Brault

For a long time, Adform has extolled the virtues of digital out-of-home. This company believes firmly in the medium’s power to communicate brand messaging to broad audiences and its capabilities in delivering precise audience metrics.

Adform, a global advertising platform headquartered in Copenhagen, is known across the industry for providing a flexible solution that services the whole campaign lifecycle. With its fully integrated advertising platform, Adform FLOW, and global reach – it’s easy to see why customers continue to gravitate towards the company’s unique offering.

How does DOOH fit into the business’s media plans? Adform’s Partner Development Manager Vittorio Capasso has some thoughts on the subject. We reached him in London to discuss this and why he thinks digital out-of-home needs to be a fixture in the media budgets for businesses of all sizes.

What do you think are some of the barriers or challenges that a digital marketer faces as they start exploring, planning and integrating DOOH in their omnichannel campaigns?

One of the main challenges is that clients don’t realize the scale of DOOH, which impacts how they plan their campaigns. Reach, screen availability, where screens are located, types of screens and the environment where the ad will be displayed—if it’s in a mall, highway, or supermarket, this can all make a difference.

We also notice that clients wonder how they can reach their audiences through DOOH. I think marketers are also used to running traditional campaigns with third-party cookies available, and it’s pretty easy nowadays to pick and choose their audiences. With DOOH, the story’s different, and we find that it’s more about educating clients, agencies, advertisers on how audiences can be reached through DOOH and the best ways they can achieve that.

And the third part is the measurement. Clients can measure the impact of their campaigns. Traditional campaigns require specific tools to measure many aspects of the campaign but with DOOH, how you measure your campaign is a little different, and I think there’s more education that needs to be done here as well.

What do you think is DOOH’s role in a media plan? Has it changed over the last couple of years?

As we settle into this “new normal,” there seems to be an evident appetite for OOH media and programmatic DOOH. What would you say are the main drivers of that?

With restrictions being lifted in many countries, we’re starting to see an increase in demand for DOOH. In the next few years, we think DOOH is a channel that needs to always be on media plans. In every campaign, a DOOH piece should be included because it can make a difference. For brand campaigns, this needs to be there—it’s so impactful as a channel. You can reach many people at the same time and have the opportunity to be creative with campaigns you run, campaigns that have the potential to grab people’s attention and stay with them.

In light of the upcoming withdrawal of third-party cookies and the renewed attention on contextual advertising, what do you see the role of programmatic DOOH being? 

For several years, we’ve been working on proposing solutions for our clients, enabling them to run campaigns similarly, without third-party cookies. I think clients are used to talking about first-party data and thinking about the world without third-party cookies, but I think this will help boost the DOOH and allow it to stand out from the other channels. With Google recent announcement regarding the withdrawal of third-party cookies being pushed to 2023, the industry will have more time to adapt and DOOH can help the transition as it is a cookie-less environment by nature.

Knowing that there are more strict privacy policies and fewer opt-in location-based users and mobile data, how do you think this will impact DOOH execution and is this a concern? 

Do you think marketers fully understand the programmatic DOOH opportunity? Is more education needed? 

In general, I think there is a good understanding of the basics, but it depends on the specific markets and clients. Some markets are advanced in DOOH because it’s already been a part of the landscape, while some still need to be educated on the basics. But I believe a good portion of the market needs to learn about the real opportunities and capabilities of DOOH, such as measurement and audience-targeting, which needs to be made more clear to clients, and that’s one of Adform’s goals. Marketers want to run sophisticated campaigns, and DOOH needs to adapt to that. DOOH has made progress in recent years, with many capabilities that I don’t think are fully used by clients. 

Do you see more clients wanting to leverage dynamic creative?

That’s something we see more of lately, though this is something clients are requesting as I don’t think dynamic capabilities are being used as broadly as they should be. But I believe in the future that dynamic creative campaigns will be increasingly deployed in the DOOH channel, as programmatic makes it even easier. But the market needs to be educated. Clients want to be reassured that their campaigns are going to be executed with no issue. 

What is essential for you when choosing a DOOH supply-side platform (SSP), and where do you think the opportunities are from an SSP perspective? 

What role does Broadsign Reach SSP play in your supply? 

I think Reach is a great tool. It gives us the flexibility to get the information and details that we need whenever we need them. I think about it from the planning perspective so that I can secure the info easily. Troubleshooting is one key differentiator of Reach as we can troubleshoot things much quicker with your SSP and of course, the great support offered by the team at Broadsign makes everything much easier.