Looking forward to a data-rich future for OOH

Guest Column: Ajay Mehta, Founder and MD, Interactive Television, and MD of Kinetic India, shares toplines of emergent trends in the outdoor advertising medium

by Ajay Mehta
Published - January 27, 2023
5 minutes To Read
Looking forward to a data-rich future for OOH

Outdoor bounced back last year and reached pre-Covid levels for us. We saw diverse categories and clients exploring outdoor as mobility also exceeded pre-Covid levels. Outdoor as a medium drove new narratives and stayed on top of macro trends and cultural insights. Our analysis showed over 10,000 active brands on OOH across 2022.
Below are toplines of the emergent trends seen during the year.


We noted a number of short campaigns for brands through the entanglement of premium and ultra-premium sites backed by audience data to drive reach across digital-led ambient locations in Metros and Tier 1 cities. This helped catch the difficult-to-reach premium audiences who typically evade traditional media targeting.

Additionally, the proliferation of DOOH has democratized OOH at premium touchpoints e.g., Airports, Malls and Corporate offices. Where one traditional site per month investment would have been equivalent to a smaller brand’s year-long marketing budget, DOOH allows for segmentation and targeted campaigns. This feature of DOOH has allowed new fledgling brands to explore OOH at these premium touchpoints, which otherwise would have been prohibitively expensive.

DOOH continued to be the growth driver for OOH and achieved a double-digit share of OOH in value terms. By as early as 2024 we estimate DOOH to garner above 15% share of OOH.


Airports have long been a premium touchpoint and the smart choice to target affluent audiences. However, as normalcy returned so has airport traffic. Aided by ‘revenge travel’ airports remained a critical touchpoint.

This sudden surge of continued traffic has led to increased dwell time. Further, there has been an increase in the diversity of types, quality, and quantity of DOOH media at airports.

Brand safety - a critical consideration for OOH especially for luxury brands - can be nearly guaranteed at airports because of its shared perceived value. In the same vein, non-luxury brands that wanted to appeal to a higher socio-economic audience set have also found airports to be invaluable as well aided by the democratization of OOH through DOOH.

We saw innovative advertising formats becoming mainstream at key airport hubs. First-class lounges, private terminals, digital pods, and new media at entry/exit terminals brought in new advertisers, owing to a new visibility-centric approach shown by airport media partners. This has improved the targeting of high-value / difficult-to-reach audiences.


The pandemic presented a unique scenario to those in the workforce. Being homebound during the lockdown and later the unlock phases put residential at the centre of OOH planning, and other satellite touchpoints within its 5km radius. Clusters, including grocery and pharma stores, local retail, cinema/plex and local parks, became crucial and we expect this trend to continue into 2023.

Though mobility is at an all-time high – understanding nuanced commute patterns were critical to ensuring that our clients had the most efficient campaigns basis their markets and target groups. Other clusters included corporate hubs as a centre – and satellite touchpoints included key transit points & integrated shopping areas – where we saw higher dwell time and footfalls.


With teams continuing to return to office – and in certain cases a hybrid work culture – this has become another critical touchpoint driving frequency for OOH campaigns impactfully. Media opportunities within corporate spaces were already in a digital format in the top metros. Investments were also made to programmatically connect these digital OOH sites to enhance targeting and value for advertisers.

Tech-First Innovations

The proliferation of DOOH led to new innovation opportunities for OOH. We were bowled over by the sheer enthusiasm for this in the ecosystem as well. Right from media partners – who were willing to walk the extra mile to test and deploy creatives in line with international standards, to content creators with whom we collaborated to deliver multiple tech-led and 3D anamorphic campaigns. From a single-line client brief to storyboarding to product modelling and animation, syncing the storyline along with post-production using cinematic VFX – we did it all. Each of these tech-first ooh campaigns garnered huge eyeballs on-ground, then went viral in the digital social media space.


Data was the driver of conversations across and helped bring OOH to the fore. We at Kinetic have been diligently incorporating tools to deliver audience understanding and insights. During the progressive unlock period we developed IOM – India-On-the-Move to understand audience mobility patterns and trends. This helped us build comfort for the medium with clients. We integrated the digital mobile tech stack to report clear and transparent numbers for our campaigns. We delivered OOH metrics to key stakeholders typically seen in only the digital medium. This integration of data for OOH with other mediums – continued to drive the next level of growth for the medium.

Further, we are at the cusp of transitioning from surrogate-based planning for OOH to audiences by segment-wise commute patterns and dwell time, thereby directly optimizing OOH campaigns. This uses Artificial Intelligence to deliver greater value and ROI for our clients. We look forward to 2023 and a data-rich future for OOH.

(The views expressed here are solely those of the authors and do not in any way represent the views of pitchonnet.com)