Over this past week there’s been some coverage about ESPN’s campaign in UK.
Behind-the-scenes the ESPN campaign needed a multi-national effort and that should be a wake up call for people watching DOOH more closely.
Because this is becoming a turnkey requirement for all DOOH networks.
On the surface the ESPN campaign seems like an simple concept – real-time comments and tweets for the launch of UK’s soccer season. But anything real-time that runs across multiple networks is no walk in the park.
The campaign required 14 different configurations for 8 networks and 300 screens. Some of the networks were ready and able to run real-time content – others less so. Some cached content until it was updated, others did not. Some updated in real time, others updated at discrete intervals. Some had a reliable hard-wired, persistent Internet connection, others had intermittent wireless connections. Some screens were portrait, others landscape, some super wide “banners”. Some had square pixels, other had oblong pixels.
That’s what we deal with at LocaModa every day. And agencies and media buyers really shouldn’t be exposed to these issues.
Cross channel DOOH might be difficult today but it’s the future because no single network can be all things to all brands all the time.
In short – media buyers and agencies want to know that their campaigns can run across multiple networks in a standard way – if that isn’t possible, networks with a propriety solution (or no solution) will be less able to attract advertisers.
I predict the type of campaign that was executed for ESPN will be run-of-the-mill within 12 months. For that reason, this was not innovative, but was also a really big deal – and Posterscope and Arena Media – the teams working in the trenches with LocaModa to make this happen – are to be congratulated. This is critical step for the development of the UK DOOH market.