Public Art – Unexpected Boost For Outdoor Advertisers

By Kevin Bartanian, EVP, Sales and Business Development at StandardVision

Some people may be puzzled by the idea of making a significant investment in digital non-commercial content. I’m talking about public art. What is the role of art in an outdoor advertising platform?

At StandardVision, two factors drove our decision to include artwork in our large-scale digital displays.

The first was giving back to the community. When we created the digital spectacular at the Marriott L.A. Live—at 3,700 square feet, the largest full motion digital display in the city—we knew we were creating much more than a billboard. We were creating a city landmark. As such, we wanted to include content that would enrich the environment and make a unique statement. By featuring work from local artists we put the character of the city on display in a huge way.

The second factor was attracting viewers (impressions). With the explosion of information at our fingertips and all around us, advertisers are finding it increasingly difficult to reach and engage their audience. By interspersing ads with art pieces we capture consumers’ attention and increase the impact of those ads.

How Did We Achieve This Art-Centric Approach?

We hired an in-house executive producer and a director of programming and licensing; built an in-house production team, including editors, designers and camera operators; and invested in state-of-the-art gear to support super-high resolutions—4k and 6k content is now our standard.

To ensure our target audience would appreciate our choice of content, we interviewed community stakeholders, including nearby residents.

Then we reached out to local artists, including digital animators, photographers, and directors. This was our pitch: we’ll provide you with LA’s largest digital canvas to create something really special for our community and we’ll help you execute your vision. We supported the production of the artists’ work, giving them access to our team and equipment.

Another key to our success is giving the artwork significant airtime. Non-commercial content is displayed continuously within a rotation and is not limited to off-peak hours

Not Convinced Yet? Take A Look At Our Results:

●     Our full-motion display is now the highest revenue generating street-side display in all of Los Angeles.

●     Artwork that we’ve displayed and helped to produce has been mentioned in the New York Times, the LA Times, and selected as Vimeo’s Pick of the Day.

●     The community has embraced the sign at the Marriott L.A. Live and we’ve gained a following of influencers who draw crowds to the display once a month to watch the art content live.

Conclusion:

Our collective goal as outdoor advertising companies should be a harmonious experience between the advertiser and the community we have the pleasure of serving. Given consumers’ limited attention span, advertisers must make it valuable for consumers to interact with their OOH advertising efforts. The solution is to be consumer focused—create content that first serves the consumer, and then the brand. Attention-grabbing marketing that evokes emotion and inspires consumers to share is valuable and effective for everyone involved.


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