The Vaccine Rollout and OOH
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The Vaccine Rollout and OOH
by Casey Binkley, CEO at Movia Media
Vaccines are rolling out by the millions across the United States right now, with roughly 264.5 million doses delivered to states and territories. This has given much-needed hope to Americans after what has been a very difficult year and a half. The doling out of the vaccine has depended on a number of factors including, population, price, distribution capabilities, geography, quantity, and more. How the rollout goes also depends on what state you live in, making getting the word out a complex process.
OOH has been one of the most important mediums for educating people since the beginning of the pandemic, and its usefulness has only increased with the need to explain why and where to get the jab.
This rollout will inevitably affect the way that OOH advertisements are bought across America. Since different states are handling the pandemic differently and are administering vaccines at different rates, how they make use of OOH will be unique to their situation.
The New York Times has created a clever vaccine tracker where Americans can track how many people are fully vaccinated in any state, in real time. States such as New Hampshire and Connecticut are among those that have the highest number of people vaccinated, with over half their populations having received the first dose. These are the states where OOH advertising is likely thriving the most right now, since more people are feeling safer to go out, and have more places to visit. In New Hampshire for example, people are able to go to the movies, golf, go camping, go to restaurants, and check out museums and art galleries. This leaves a much larger opportunity for OOH advertisers to reach and engage with consumers, as they begin to enjoy activities outside their homes once again.
Active COVID-19 cases in Michigan however, have surpassed 100,000 in the last week, putting the state in the most critical situation in the country. In total, it accounts for more than 10 percent of the country’s daily cases, and is home to 16 of the 17 metro areas with the nation’s worst recent case rates. Because of this, OOH advertisers are certainly less inclined to create billboard ads, DOOH signs in malls, or other such ads in places where people won’t be going to for a while. In a state like Michigan, a safer and more effective approach to OOH advertising right now would be to use a medium like truck-side advertising that can reach people where they are – which is at home. Cruising through residential neighborhoods is a more efficient way of bringing ads to people who won’t going to be going out very much in the next couple months, or at least until the number of cases decrease and the number of vaccinated people rise.
Overall, as the country enters the post-pandemic stage, the most likely scenario for OOH advertising is a greater reliance on data in order to track consumer habits. As different states begin to open up at different speeds, and with different restrictions, things like programmatic OOH and digitally-driven OOH technology will be extremely beneficial for advertisers to track their target market and optimize their campaigns. If we’ve learned anything from the pandemic, it’s that the future is uncertain. By relying on data and advanced technology, advertisers can assume less risk, take advantage of more flexibility, and gain a better understanding of the ever-changing market.