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Digital Out of Home will explode as a medium in 2020

The DOOH Industry is evolving at a rapid pace in the Netherlands, with an exciting combination of market consolidation, technological development and increased media buying from expanding digital and OOH budgets.

OOH is quite possibly the oldest advertising medium in existence: the traditional poster and painted posters on the side of shops have existed since time before the industrial revolution. In ancient Greece, Epicurus displayed mottos on walls as a way of motivating the population of a city, promoting his philosophical ideas. In short, OOH is old and we are seeing the old dog learn some new tricks.

Digital Screen penetration

Over the next 5 to 10 years an explosion of digital screens in the Netherlands is expected, with more and more traditional poster locations being replaced with digital screens. More digital screens will make more advertising inventory available and make it easier to implement OOH campaigns. Eric Kip from Exterion Media claims that half of all OOH advertising will be digital. In a recent interview published on Emerce, Eric explains that the opportunity for growing the quality of OOH advertising is huge. The market is ripe for both disruption and innovation.

Dominance of HTML5 enabled screens in NL

The Netherlands is one of the most progressive markets in the world when it comes to the availability of HTML5 enabled screens. More than 85% of all media owners situated in the Netherlands have HTML5 enabled screens, that’s a higher penetration than the UK and the US. HTML5 enabled screens provide technical possibilities that offer more relevant creative (dynamic) save time in the production process (responsive size ads) and trafficking (duplicating & dynamic).

The rise of programmatic

Programmatic media buying is on the rise in the Netherlands, however according to the IAB programmatic report published in 2019, 60% of IAB members attributed fragmentation as a key reason as to why media budgets moving into DOOH is not rising fast enough.

According to my calculations programmatic media spend in the Netherlands on DOOH accounts for 5 to 10% of spend. This is relatively small, but the number will grow. The great thing about programmatic is that it encourages digital media planners and agencies to easily plan campaigns on digital OOH and push up the overall spend in the industry. However, planners need to keep in mind that DOOH is not digital. The metrics used are significantly different and implementing campaigns requires contact with more stakeholders.

Limited know-how on creative execution

While DOOH is rapidly expanding in the Dutch market, and the technology is in place to execute high quality campaigns, the levels of creative and technical suppliers are limited compared to markets like the UK. Daan Krijnen, Innovation Director from Ocean Outdoor explains:

“Creative agencies cannot possibly know everything there is to know about Digital Out of Home production. There is a Gap in the Dutch market for a specialised player that can help facilitate technical ad implementation and work with both OOH specialists and creatives.” – Daan Krijnen, Ocean Outdoor

Digital out of Home is not Digital

While more and more digital agencies and media planners shift budgets from online to DOOH, it must be clear that these channels are inherently different. The buying models are quite different and campaign measurement rely on different types of data sets. From a creative perspective, designs and animations need to be adapted, it’s not a case of re-sizing an online banner to a poster size. DOOH creative design should be simplistic in its execution and encourage mobile searches.

All eyes on the Netherlands

It’s an exciting time in the Dutch market, there will be further acquisitions, mergers and investments in the DOOH realm. Ads will become more engaging and relevant to the general public, which can only be a good thing.

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