The importance of scale, efficiency and transparency

Brendon Cook at Data Science event

Brendon Cook talks to Seedooh in their latest partner profile about how the “Covid world” has further sharpened the focus on data and technology, the ever-changing dynamics of the sector, and the importance of scale, efficiency and transparency.

Q: The oOh! business has grown enormously through both organic and acquisitive expansion in the last 10 years, most recently with the onboarding of Adshel in 2018. What’s the plan for growth from here?

With Adshel coming into the business, our portfolio of assets and ability to reach audiences at scale is now unrivalled, at both a metro and national level. Our plans moving forward will demonstrate how scale of reach, combined with category buyer targeting, delivers the most unmissable and effective campaigns for our agencies and clients. Addressing the needs of the market by delivering efficient reach of audiences is how we will be best positioned to grow.

On top of this we want to make the process of planning, buying, managing, tracking and analysing Out of Home campaigns a lot simpler and smarter through our investments in technology and quality data. If we can streamline that customer experience, we will create more advocates for the medium and growth will follow.

Q: oOh! took a strategic leadership approach and began investing in connected data and technology across the business a few years ago – how’s that going, and how has COVID changed your perspective on this?

When you have tens of thousands of assets, understanding audience at location and understanding how to influence ROI through the most effective combination of environments and formats is critical. We made very deliberate choices about the type of data we chose to map our panels against. Developing our SmartReach planning tool, powered by Quantium, provides retail purchasing data mapped to location, giving us the ability to know what the audience buys, and not just where they are.

Targeting category buyers, or buyergraphics, is proven without doubt to drive greater campaign effectiveness than demographic targeting. Developing the tech to deliver category buyers, at speed, across thousands of locations is a huge task, but will deliver a step change in the way we deal with the industry – saving time while delivering cost efficiencies and certainty of audience, is a huge focus. COVID-19 hasn’t changed our direction, but intensified our focus on the importance of delivering the best outcomes for our clients through the scale of our network, enabled by our data and tech.

Q: There’s a new competitive environment on at least two new fronts from here on in. Firstly, JCDecaux are a global force to be reckoned with in ANZ now, since their acquisition of APN, and secondly, media budgets may be challenged moving forward. Is this a new battleground? Do any of the old rules apply? What’s the biggest priority for the next 12 months?

The competitiveness of the landscape has always existed, but the opportunity for consolidation, which looked like it would occur, hasn’t eventuated as such. Street Furniture is a great example – by this time next year there will be three players, and there are also multiple players in retail. Our biggest priority is focusing on what we can deliver for our customers, and the one thing that will not change for us and that is what we can deliver to the market as a scaled, national offering, underpinned by robust third party and industry approved data. We have incredible reach, with the ability to deliver greater efficiency through that scale, and that is especially valuable as the media landscape becomes more complex to navigate. Disparate data sets, questionable data quality, complex and convoluted offerings… all of these things make Out of Home hard. Our priority is to make buying audiences at scale simple, effective and efficient.

Q: oOh! were the first Out-of-Home business to embrace independent verification and complete transparency at scale. What were you thinking at the time? And now, after 3 years?

Our decision to enter into verification was built on the belief that our advertising partners have the right to know they got what they paid for – it’s that straightforward.

This view remains the same as the industry develops. It is interesting to see that themes around ad fraud, brand safety and delivery are not going away in other channels. However, Out of Home as a physical, not blockable or skippable medium, continues to value third party verification to ensure we deliver on our promise.

The Seedooh platform provides us with the cleanest and most transparent integration into our systems. It is a platform that is always available to both buyer and seller to track campaigns and, most importantly, provides advertisers a reporting solution across digital and static inventory. These are the important reasons that make Seedooh the right verification platform for oOh!media’s business across Australia and New Zealand.

This article first appeared as a Seedooh partner profile.