Not too & #BANNER1 & # long ago, outdoor advertising was hardly a dream job for aspirants. So much so, that there was an 'Asian caste system' of sorts, wherein outdoor figured way down in a person's preference set. "But that seems to be changing now," said AP Parigi, managing director and chief executive officer, Entertainment Network India Limited (ENIL), at the Outdoor Advertising Convention (OAC) 2007, held in Mumbai recently.
He went on to quote WPP chairman and CEO, Martin Sorrell, as well as Carat CEO, David Verklin, as having predicted in 2006, that OOH will be amongst the most explosive media over the next 5-10 years, second only to online media globally, and in India. "This is clearly because outdoor always manages to strike its target," remarked Parigi. He went on to highlight the advantages of OOH advertising: better reach, frequency, target marketing, exposure and repetition opportunities, creative impact and cost-efficiency.
Next, Parigi spoke of the characteristics of OOH. For one, it is a largely fragmented, local medium, which is concentrated in metros and small towns. Further, it offers a huge scope for technological innovations, such as LEDs and other digital advancements, watching and listening billboards (wherein an ad adapts itself to the viewer/listener who is around), and satellite controlled illumination. But the factors that are limiting its growth include a fragmented growth environment, short duration contracts, license fee contract structures, and an absence of measurability and a centralised regulatory body.
"If SEZs, highways and seaports are allowed to facilitate outdoor advertising, then there's no stopping this industry," Parigi concluded.
For the record, at present, the OOH advertising industry in India is growing at a 17 per cent CAGR over the next five years.