Factors that determine ROI from “Outdoor Video and TV” advertizing systems

Chief editor - Vladimir Krylov

The basic aim in developing “Outdoor Video and TV” advertizing systems was to convey information to viewers with maximum effectiveness and using the latest digital computer technologies. If we consider ROI (return-on-investment) as a difference between income and expenses over a certain time period, then we must also identify parameters that affect income and expenses. It is also essential to prioritize these parameters and rank them in terms of their effect on profit and expenses. Let’s start with profit.

Since “Outdoor Video and TV” systems belong to the area of outdoor advertizing, we must first consider those parameters that determine income in outdoor advertising.

  • Number of contacts;
  • Length of contacts;
  • Psychological aspects during contacts;
  • Physiological aspects during contacts.

There are plenty of other factors, but the above four are the most valid for all projects and calculations. In the above list they are ranked by priority. The first parameter (number of contacts) is the most important, the one that determines location (proper placement) of the outdoor advertising system:

  • Transport and passenger flows at the site;
  • Direction of flows: movement directly toward the system, or by-passing it somewhere on the side. The factor that advertisers believe to be important is whether people look at the advertising media directly or have to move the head or eyes to see the picture.

Another important factor, length of contacts, is determined primarily by:

  • Linear dimensions of the outdoor advertizing system (the larger is the system, the longer is the time during which people watch the displayed information and consciously or subconsciously memorize it);
  • Special characteristics (optimal ratio between elevation of the system, its linear dimensions and location). A digital screen on the edge of the square or intersection of major avenues must correspond in size to the opening perspective and be properly elevated. When the field of vision is blocked by nearby houses or trees, a outdoor screen may not be large necessarily.

It is common knowledge that perception is affected by:

  • Psychological factors, or internal positive motivation to absorb information and
  • Physiological aspects, or number of perceived colors, minimum and maximum dimension of readable letters, animation and video clips or commercials.

The psychological factors dictate the following principles of effective system placement:

  • The digital advertizing systems must be located in places directly following the field of vision of drivers or passengers, so that most people wouldn’t have to move head or eyes to watch the “Outdoor Video and TV” screen;
  • The systems must be located in places where people may have to spend some time, e.g. waiting for public transport, waiting in the traffic jam or at the street lights. The underlying reason is that outdoor screens are psychologically welcomed by people since they help to spend the time otherwise wasted in empty waiting. The outdoor advertising does not interrupt an interesting program, feature film or music clip but fills in the time with bright images and useful (though advertising) information.

On the other hand, city streets and squares the world over are overflowing with static (dead) billboards that is psychologically displeasing. People are acutely aware that all this advertising does not decorate towns any longer. People subconsciously rebel against too many billboards blocking view on all sides. However, it is technically impossible to place more than one message on a billboard. That is why their number grows exponentially with the ever-growing number of products that need advertising.

The appearance of digital “Outdoor Video and TV” advertizing systems allows to resolve this paradox.

Digital screens combine all the advantages of outdoor advertising with the aesthetically important factor of beautifying a city. They effectively utilize all the time around-the-clock by displaying ever-changing advertising commercials that stimulates perception and creates positive motivation in potential consumers.

Additionally, digital advertising screens have new positive qualities that are technically unreachable for static outdoor advertising: not only the digital screens show advertising commercials but display socially important information from city authorities.

However, the digital screens have to be placed in strategically important and populous areas to utilize all positive aspects of informational media and avoid negative factor of adding to the already ever-present billboards:

  • Psychologically it is very important that a viewer makes practically no effort to see or read the message on the advertising system. He should not strain to see what is displayed there, or turn his head to the side while walking or driving. For his motivation to remain positive, he must see the screen naturally in his direct line of vision; while the outdoor screen must be large enough to display big images that will be easily legible or recognizable.
  • Another important aspect that affects positive perception is the novelty of images and information. When the image is not photographically perfect but is artistically distorted, it produces much greater effect and is memorized far better than traditional, acceptable or customary information. Thus, people are always attracted by avant-garde or impressionism in art because it aims to shock and show something out of the ordinary. The same effect is observed when the static advertising is replaced by “live” screens.

Let us now turn to physiological aspects of outdoor advertising:

  • Minimum and maximum distances for perception of letters, animation and video clips;
  • Perception of colors and shades of colors: 65 000 – in the evening and at night and 16 000 – during daytime;
  • Rate of frames: 20 frames per second;
  • Outdoor screen brightness – from 4 000 cd/m2.

The optimal dynamics in terms of ROI (return-on-investment) and income is demonstrated by outdoor advertizing screens with linear dimensions 9x12 meters. It’s up to you to draw conclusions!