As Out of Home continues to go through rapid transformation and technological advances, we sat down with our Client Partnership Director Aimee McKay, whose role it is to translate these changes to brands, highlight the many opportunities of Out of Home, and explain how the oldest advertising medium in the world continues to be one of the most relevant.
“I love my role because I get to work and interact with everyone at the company. My job is to help make the company become more client focused, and most importantly understand what it is that our clients want and need from us. Our team try to focus on three main pillars – continuing to deliver for our key clients, helping advertisers grow their Out of Home presence, and acquiring new clients by educating advertisers on the potential of Out of Home.”
Although traditionally, specialists have always been the gateway to Out of Home, Aimee explains that it’s important as a media owner to maintain relationships with all the key stakeholders. “Obviously it’s a really long buying chain, with media owners at one end and the client at the other, but I believe it’s really important for everyone to be in communication with one another and sharing ideas. That’s something Clear Channel does really well, especially when we bring clients to internal sessions here at the Golden Square office Playground. In most sessions we have at least one person from each part of the planning and buying process, with stakeholders from client, agency, specialists, and creative agencies. Not only does this make for great brainstorming sessions, but it also allows everyone to see and learn about the exciting possibilities of using Out of Home.”
“We receive great feedback from our clients, not just regarding the great ideas that stem from Playground sessions, but also how our consultative approach helps shift people’s views of media owners and Out of Home. As the industry continues to change and go through a digital expansion it’s important that we’re sharing our expertise and sharing all the new opportunities that Out of Home can provide.”
The brands embracing the new digital landscape and the opportunities provided are already starting to reap the benefits and see success. Aimee says, “One of my favourite recent campaigns has been Shop Direct who truly took advantage of digital changes in the industry. Not only were they, as an online tech company, able to achieve a substantial high-street presence with our classic portfolio, they also combined this with an impressive digital campaign that used sales data to tailor different creatives advertising trending products online. This is something you simply couldn’t have done even five years ago. As a client, Shop Direct is great at truly utilising the full capabilities of our Out of Home network and consequently achieving effective mass reach, tactical activation, and brand fame.”
“Oh and of course they simply look fantastic on our premium Storm sites!”
As technological advances also throw up new problems for brands to consider, Aimee notes that luckily Out of Home often avoids this problem by being very much in the public eye: “brand safety is a hot topic at the moment and it’s something we’re very much aware of. We face far fewer challenges around content than online media owners, but it’s still really important to us. We are accountable to advertisers and their customers for how the message is received in context.”
“Additionally, social responsibility is really important to us and to our clients, so we’re definitely thinking a lot more about how our products impact the environment, how we contribute to local communities, and also how we can build on this in the future to make Out of Home better.”
So what does the future hold for the industry?
“Thinking about the changes coming, especially in regards to digital expansion, it’s a bit scary but also really exciting. Looking far into the future, who knows how the physical products will change or how we’ll be selling. However, we know short-term that the opportunities for advertisers and brand engagement will keep increasing and be constantly evolving. Clients will always be looking at how things are changing and what new opportunities there will be to engage with customers. As media owners we also need to make sure we’re moving and keeping pace – we can’t stand still, we have to keep up.”
Aimee’s role makes her the perfect ambassador for Out of Home, and with 18 years’ worth of experience in the industry, there is one simple question she encounters most often: Why Out of Home?
“Out of Home is everywhere and anywhere, it’s both traditional and new, and it’s constantly evolving. It’s really exciting.”