It’s fair to say that the lockdown has created challenging market conditions for the Out of Home (OOH) industry but we’re not going to write a doom and gloom piece. If there is one thing the ad industry is especially good at, it is finding silver linings, so whilst there is a significant decline expected in OOH revenues in Q2 of 2020 there’s optimism for a recovery in Q3 and Q4.  We think investing in OOH, is still worthwhile.

OOH advertising revenues have been growing steadily over the last 10 years.


UK OOH ad revenues
UK OOH ad revenues. Graph: Outsmart


Out of Home revenue for the fourth quarter of 2019 saw growth of +4.9% from £358 million in Q4 2018 to £376 million in Q4 2019.


UK Out of Home Revenue by Quarter
UK Out of Home Revenue by Quarter. Graph: Outsmart


These figures show that prior to the lockdown being introduced in March 2020, the OOH industry was actually on track for growth. Figures collated by PwC show a 1.8% and 3.8% year on year growth for January and February respectively, versus 2019. See, we promised you this wouldn’t be a story of doom and gloom!

So what is so great about OOH and why is investing in OOH still worthwhile?


Music to every marketers’ ears! Of all media platforms OOH advertising has the potential to reach the largest audience, the highest number of times and across the longest time-frame at the lowest cost per thousand. According to research by Route, 98% of the UK population see out of home advertising every week.

Free to consume

Unlike owning a television or surfing the net, stumbling across OOH advertising is totally cost-free.

Broad targeting

Due to the open nature of OOH, billboards, bus shelter posters, and taxi wraps are seen by all types of people and are a brilliant way of gaining large-scale, general brand awareness – simply getting your brand in front of people.

Strategic placement

That being said, certain roads are known for attracting certain types of people (perhaps the route provides access to a large school or business park) and this knowledge allows media planners to suss out more tactical ways of reaching your specific audience when required.


Unless someone makes the conscious effort to avoid walking/driving in areas that host OOH advertising (bit weird if you ask us), they are going to stumble across the odd billboard or bus shelter. With little else distracting them, the chance of the viewer absorbing the marketing message is greater too.


OOH ads never switch off and thus provide a constant visual trigger. With regular passer-bys viewing the same billboard several times over a campaign period, repetition rates (and in turn, familiarity figures) are high.

Billboards are BIG

Quite literally. 48 and 96 sheet billboards demand attention. Furthermore, as stand-alone format billboards do not compete with other advertisements for attention. They allow you to be creative and show off your brand.

Higher OTS (opportunity to see)

Consumers spend more time out and about today than they did 10 years ago spending an average of 3 hours and 10 minutes in public places every day (Source: Outsmart) which means out of home gives your brand plenty of opportunities to be seen.

Negativity is in the eye of the beholder

And this is what we see: OOH is a great environment to showcase creativity in relevant locations. It’s cost-effective. It creates an impact by being unavoidable. It’s free to consume and it has the ability to target broad and narrow audiences. OOH is definitely worth investing in.

If these points have lead you to think about investing in OOH, drop us a line and we’ll be sure to have a chat about how we can make the media platform work for you and your brand.