Marketers Can Convert Millions of Undecided Retail Shoppers this Holiday Season

By Clear Channel Outdoor InSites Archives
Cover image for  article: Marketers Can Convert Millions of Undecided Retail Shoppers this Holiday Season

In these frenetic last days of the election season, it may feel like undecided voters are all anyone is talking about. But if you’re a marketer or retailer, there’s a different and powerful group of “undecideds” you should be thinking about -- undecided holiday shoppers. In fact, 45 percent of all shoppers have yet to decide where they will shop this holiday season. And 33 percent of shoppers expect to still be buying gifts the week before holiday. (Perk & CCOA Survey, August 2016).  As marketers fine tune their holiday campaigns, here are a few key points that can change the game in reaching and influencing consumers’ buying decisions this year.

Reach Consumers as They’re Making Their Shopping Decisions.

When you consider that consumers spend 70 percent of their waking hours outside the home it makes sense that out-of-home (OOH) advertising is uniquely positioned to help marketers reach consumers in real-time as they are making buying decisions. Whether present buying or holiday party planning, 32 percent of consumers are thinking about shopping during their commutes and 68 percent are thinking specifically about grocery shopping (Perk & CCOA Survey, August 2016).  OOH is proven to not only influence consideration but to actually drive purchase behavior.  As illustrated in a recent study conducted by Starcom Mediavest Group there was a 92 percent correlation between product purchase and exposure to out-of-home media in the half-hour before a purchase was made, proving that more than any other medium -- including TV, print, search, social media and digital video -- OOH exposure drives purchase behavior.

Target and Reach the Right Consumer Segments.

Mobile location data provides a powerful tool that can be used to understand the movement patterns of consumers, the stores they visit and the OOH displays that are most likely to efficiently reach them.  Each of Clear Channel Outdoor America’s (CCOA) roadside assets are now ranked using anonymous third-party mobile data for their ability to target over 700 distinct audience groups.  With this embrace of mobile data, marketers can now plan and deliver advertising targeted to behavioral audience segments in the same way they do with online and mobile, further integrating OOH into the digital media mix.

The More You Spend, the More You’re Out of the Home.

There is also a direct correlation between the amount of time a consumer spends away from home and the amount of money spent shopping, making OOH the natural partner for brands this holiday season. In fact, the bigger spenders spend more time out of their homes than other consumers. For example, those who spent $500 or more on sporting equipment in the last year were 105 percent more likely to drive 250 miles per week, dramatically increasing their opportunity for exposure to OOH advertising. (Scarborough USA+ Release 2 Aug 2014-October 2015).

OOH Moves Consumers Farther and Faster Down Their Decision Journey to the Point of Sale.

OOH is proven to drive consumers to take action.  One in two consumers that see a billboard end up visiting a website related to the advertisement, and a full 39 percent of these end up researching more information online about the product. But perhaps even more importantly, OOH has a strong influence on getting consumers into brick and mortar stores where 85% of consumers still prefer to shop. In fact, nearly one out of four consumers exposed to a billboard end up going to a store to look at the merchandise (eMarketer, Retail Ecommerce Sales). Whether they purchase the product in store or simply go to retail to do further research, OOH drives consumers to take action and move further down the path to purchase.

Integrated Campaigns are More Effective

OOH pairs seamlessly with mobile to drive a customer to a point of sale or to take action.  By targeting consumers via OOH and retargeting exposed consumers with a follow-up mobile message, marketers can guide consumers along the path to purchase and deliver ad messages at the right time on the consumer journey.  Both digital OOH and mobile messaging can be tailored to capitalize on specific behaviors: welcoming travelers to a new city via airport OOH ads as soon as they step off of a plane and suggesting hotel stay options via mobile retargeting; or using the power of digital OOH to change ad copy based on external triggers like the weather, with mobile ads emphasizing and amplifying the OOH message in a coordinated way. Clear Channel Outdoor has worked with more than 100 customers to deliver integrated OOH and mobile programs that drive quantifiable results.  A great illustration of the power of the OOH and mobile combo is a recent program with Boston Market.

Affordable Thanksgiving at Boston Market

Last Thanksgiving, Boston Market wanted to make its restaurants the choice for families and friends to enjoy an affordable, flavorful, catered meal at home. They specifically wanted to engage with 25-54 year olds in the Baltimore/DC area, so they used a combination of geo-targeted digital OOH advertising reinforced by mobile ads.

The combo of targeting specific audiences via OOH and mobile retargeting to amplify the message generated a mobile click-through rate 6X that of typical mobile campaigns, reinforcing the power of an integrated approach to location-based marketing. What’s more, given the timeliness of the holiday message, CCOA's media plan reached Boston Market’s target incredibly efficiently, delivering over 2.5MM OOH + mobile impressions in just one-week.

The opinions and points of view expressed in this commentary are exclusively the views of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, Inc. management or associated bloggers.


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