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The Year’s Best Recipe for OOH Excellence

Essential Observations of OOH Creative

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putting the creative process first, means we are concerned with being effective for the people we serve.

C. Todd Porter shared some of the best remarks on the subject of OOH creative I have read in many years.
His observations are not the usual ‘canned comments’ shared in social media or #OOH articles. These are dead on considerations reflecting his years of experience. To say its just about creative does not credit its value. This is must read writing.

We have the good fortune and it is a real pleasure to share his remarks.  Whether you are an agency or OOH provider, take the opportunity to share his post with your OOH colleagues in your next meeting and forward to all the others.  They will thank you.   

the kind of creative you know the client is satisfied they spent their money on our product.

 Creative Comes First

 

C. Todd Porter | Vice President & General Manager

 

 

 

Every time I see a bad piece of creative make its way on to the face of a billboard, a little part of me dies.  Every time I see a phone number on a billboard, I wince in pain. I love billboards.  I love the feeling when I see a fantastic piece of creative that thousands of eyeballs will digest every day.  I’m talking about the kind of creative you know the client is satisfied they spent their money on our product.

Creative is the single most important part of what we do.  There is not a close second.  The effect of a well-timed, poignant ad on our entire operation is incalculable.  The fact that it is truly the most honorable way to conduct our business for our customers is merely the tip of the iceberg.  Above all else, putting the creative process first, means we are concerned with being effective for the people we serve.

The fact that it is truly the most honorable way to conduct our business for our customers is merely the tip of the iceberg.  Above all else, putting the creative process first, means we are concerned with being effective for the people we serve.

Every single facet of a typical billboard operation is positively influenced by executing a well thought out piece of creative.

First, effective creative vastly increases the likelihood that the customer will see a return on their investment. After all, isn’t that the idea in the first place? If we are not focused on delivering for the client, what the hell are we doing?  We are not selling a billboard, we are selling a message. The billboard is our platform to deliver that message.  Get an effective message and you have an effective campaign.  Produce effective campaigns and you’ll have happy customers.  If you want happy customers, put creative first!

If you want happy customers, put creative first!

Second, when the creative comes first and is executed properly, the likelihood of that customer renewing skyrockets. Reducing churn is a critical way to sell more every year.  Having a book full of satisfied customers that renew every year is the mark of the best salespeople.  If you want to renew more customers, put creative first!

 renew more customers, put creative first!

Third, effective creative ensures on time payment for our service.  I’ve yet to see a satisfied customer who sees a return on their investment become a payment risk. On the contrary, collecting from those customers is an absolute breeze. They are happy to pay.  If you want better paying customers, put creative first!

 better paying customers, put creative first!

Fourth, a creative centric sales process means no late postings.  I was lucky enough a couple of years ago to be part of a group tasked with analyzing the factors associated with operational excellence at Lamar.  One area of focus was how we would increase on time postings.  The data was clear. If materials were in-house on time (the week before the post date), the instances of late postings were virtually nonexistent.  The best way to have materials on your shop floor early is to make creative the centerpiece of what you are selling. The goal is to have the creative drive the buying decision. When that is happening, the creative is approved when the contract is signed. There is no scrambling to get something last-minute.  There’s only a happy operations department.  If you want more on time postings, put creative first!

more on time postings, put creative first!

Fifth, the most engaged and productive salespeople are those that feel like they are making a difference.  You cannot beat a salesforce that makes the success of the campaign paramount.  Professionals thrive on knowing they are helping their customers reach their goals.  They become trusted resources for their customers and cultivate a solid business relationship that stands the test of time.  There is joy in helping others reach their goals.  If you want to have meaning in your work, put creative first!

 have meaning in your work, put creative first!

Last, great creative earns a buzz.  The best creative receives attention in many ways. Whether it’s at the water cooler, on the streets or in the news, fantastic creative gets attention. That’s good for our business and our customers.  Maybe the creative is good enough to earn an Addy or the highest honor in our business, an OBIE.  Either way, striving to have creative that is worth honoring is a worthwhile goal.  If you want to create a buzz for our customers and industry, put creative first!

 create a buzz for our customers and industry, put creative first!

Don’t get me wrong.  I’m not trying to say this is easy.  It’s quite difficult.  Mastering the art of meticulous discovery is no small feat.  Active listening and understanding are invaluable skills.  Learning about your customer and their business in a way that reveals the best creative opportunities takes focus and hard work.  The reward is worth it.

Mastering the art of meticulous discovery is no small feat.  Active listening and understanding are invaluable skills.

Committing to this process doesn’t mean you won’t fail.  You will.  The key is to fight for every inch of that space like your client’s business depended on it…because it does.  The idea is to get it right more often all the time.

Every time we get it right for the customer, we create an evangelist for our industry.  Every time we get it wrong, we create a detractor.  Taking ownership of the creative process with the goal of being effective instead of the goal of merely creating a sale, is a recipe for excellence.

Every time we get it right for the customer, we create an evangelist for our industry.  Every time we get it wrong, we create a detractor.  Taking ownership of the creative process with the goal of being effective instead of the goal of merely creating a sale, is a recipe for excellence.

If you want a thriving outdoor operation, put creative first!

 

C. Todd PorterVice President & General Manager

 

449 East Parkcenter Circle South | San Bernardino CA 92408

C: 661.733.0567 | D: 909.454.7304Lamar.com

 

 

 

 

 

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