World Cup 2014 and the effect on OOH

No doubt the World Cup will have a positive effect on the advertising industry, as brands seek to both promote directly and associate with the showcase for the beautiful game. England’s qualification and the location of Brazil (the most strongly-associated football nation, plus evening kick-offs) will heighten interest in the tournament). From an advertiser’s point of view, a link to football and the World Cup is a prime opportunity to engage and it is fair to say that most media will benefit from the TV-led creatives (although this also comes with high TV inflation) that feature strongly from May through to early July.

This time period is traditionally Out of Home’s busy period (World Cup year or not) as we see the onset of summer (more people out and about pursuing leisure and other interests prompted by warmer and longer days). The chart below shows the typical demand for OOH across the year, and Q2 is always a busier time as brands seek to compete for consumer attention. May brings particular demand, embracing a combination of seasonal uplift and bank holiday activity. June will typically bring more opportunity for brands and July is a time for heightened summer activity.

world cup 2014 and the effect on OOH

For this period in 2014, we would make two key observations around OOH. Firstly, the period is shifting more quickly than usual. So whilst there remains opportunity for brands, the demand is moving marginally more quickly than usual, extending average lead times to around an above-average 8-10 weeks. Secondly, however, we are noticing that there is still clear opportunity for brands wishing to use OOH at this time. Those directly associated with the World Cup are more interested in premium sites (as well as some tactical opportunities) and have tied those down. There remains opportunity to secure national broadcast campaigns and those across many environments, particularly in certain weeks during the competition itself. Media owners who have pushed World Cup packs or tried to drive premiums are not necessarily in demand; we are also resisting premium pricing where possible as the period is typically a strong one, so pricing will be determined by demand and normal (rather than exceptional) market conditions.

There are brands that will be seeking to capitalise on the period, as well as those that have an agenda loosely associated with the event, but more by the typical timing of their bursts (for example, a Sky vs BT battle for Premier League subs). Many brands will hold back their overall media activity, dissuaded by TV inflation or the prospect of media clutter.

Therefore, the message is, OOH opportunities exist and Talon is confident we can meet coverage and impacts targets across the period. We only really ever see exceptional conditions when the event is literally close to home (Olympics 2012, Euro 96). Demand is above-average in any case; it is a question of getting in early to avoid disappointment, yet formats are available to reach people on the move across the period of the event. The benefit is that there will be more people active and on the move (not reflected in Route data, for example), so is a good and cost-effective time to reach target audiences.

Talon, April 2014