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Vector Media’s Gary Greenstein

OAAA's Across the Desk with Vector Media’s Gary Greenstein

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Publisher’s Note:

Every month, OAAA’s editorial team sits down with an industry leader to discuss the latest insights, trends, and best practices for the OOH industry.
This month’s spotlighted leader and my pal of 24 years, Gary Greenstein, asked us to share this recent interview via OOH Today. I will gladly do anything for the man who personally introduced me to one of the most iconic LARGE FORMAT OOH transit vehicles in the industry, the double decker bus.  Stellar stuff below from the OAAA and Gary Greenstein. 

Across the Desk with Vector Media’s Gary Greenstein

by Kate Scanlan,

Every month, OAAA’s editorial team sits down with an industry leader to discuss the latest insights, trends, and best practices for the OOH industry. This month, we’re excited to spotlight Gary Greenstein, CRO of Vector Media.

OAAA: What excites you about OOH right now?

Gary: Honestly, it’s the excitement I’m hearing from brands about OOH; In my 25 years, it’s never been more. What encourages me is the “WHY”:

1. Curiosity and the fear of missing out. People shy away from what they don’t understand and the historical difficulty in measuring the impact of OOH has at times impaired the growth of our sector. Brand marketers are now asking the right questions and technology has started to prove what we’ve always been saying – with the data to prove it, the brands that dive into the pool headfirst are reaping the benefits.

2. The headwinds faced by other advertising formats are OOH’s tailwinds. All media has its strengths and weaknesses and trends can be both cyclical and linear. With the recent demise of TV as we know it, OOH is emerging as the best brand building option. At the same time, with recent challenges of search and online related to data and privacy, brands are learning how to use our format to also drive action. OOH can be a full funnel solution if used strategically.

3. The breakthrough in OOH audience data is now informing planning, strategy, and attribution modeling through technological advances.

4. The show stopping creative canvas on the streets, creating a brand buzz one cannot achieve through a one-to-one screen interaction. A brand cannot achieve a larger than life “WOW” moment on a mobile phone.

5. Travel is back, events are back, and audiences are hungry for life’s experiences. Brands are following and the OOH industry is well positioned to lead that charge.

OAAA: What message do you have for brands that haven’t bought OOH before?

Gary: If we have learned anything from the last few years, consumers have made it clear that they want to live their life IRL, supported by all the benefits of URL. And this is the sweet spot for OOH. Brands are taking the opportunity to engage with their audience as they get out of their “box”. There is an immediate legitimacy when consumers see a message on the streets. OOH remains the #1 most trusted medium.

OOH is also the #1 primer for online activities and search, helping support your digital investment.

Finally, a relatively small investment in OOH has been shown to amplify social. The power of larger-than-life story telling creates “Instagramable moments” unlike any other medium. When was the last time you took a photo of your TV or your desktop to then post it on your social networks? After a long couple of years, in 2023 we’re experiencing the emergence of Iconic Double Decker Spectaculars creating a buzz for brands and are seeing more new verticals than ever looking to connect dynamic creative options with more targeted formats. Large and small formats work together and the best programs we are seeing involve dynamic large format creative, supported by frequency media.OOH can lead your media plan and extend into the digital world, or OOH can amplify your digital strategy. Either way, brands are now engaging with their audience where they welcome messaging and where they want to be, In Real Life.

OAAA: What is the most impactful trend in OOH today?

Gary: OOH has always been an important part of the fabric of community but now more than ever, looking at how OOH can help support community needs has become a real focus for Vector.

This is Vector’s 25th year, and we’ve been reflecting a lot about the evolution of our industry over the last quarter century and what the next quarter century should look like. One of the key aspects of this will be making sure that we are a force for good in the world and that we are adding to the environments we serve.

A perfect example of that is the new Sidewalk and Transit Amenities Program in Los Angeles. Over the next half-decade we will be revitalizing the transit infrastructure in the most dynamic city in the country with a focus on equity, safety, and sustainability.

Anyone who looks to the public space solely as a place to install ads and to extract value is missing what’s possible. This means a focus on using technology and renewable energy to enhance the daily lives of all Angelenos, through things like real-time information, implementing amenities for wayfinding, package delivery, last mile transportation, bike and scooter share and more.

Making people’s lives better is good for business and we are thrilled to align with advertisers who share this vision. Consumers today want to support brands who actually care about them and their future. OOH brings brands and consumers together when it matters most!

The opportunity has arrived. It is up this dedicated and passionate industry to seize the moment and never look back.

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