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How Uber and Lyft are driving Digital Out-of-Home (DOOH) to whole new levels for Advertisers.

Digital out-of-home (DOOH) advertising is a perfect combination of real-world physical presence with the efficiency of digital media and it is growing at an immense rate at present with many brands looking at ways to leverage it for both, advertising and monetizing it. And, the newest entrants to join the wagon are Lyft and Uber who are trying to monetize it with their taxi-top advertising options.

Both these big boys of the ride-hailing industry have been facing mounting pressure to turn profitable as they continue burning a hole in their pockets where Uber reported a net loss of $8.5 billion in the fiscal year 2019 and Lyft reported a net loss of $.26 billion in the same period. Hence, it seemed inevitable for them to get into advertising to generate revenues and balance their books.

In tandem to Lyft’s plan to turn profitable by the 4th quarter of 2021, it acquired HALO Cars, a rooftop advertising company that installs smart LED screens atop taxis to serve geo-targeted full-motion video ads in real-time with hyper-targeting such as weather conditions and promises brand safety.

Soon after, Uber in partnership with Adomni revealed Uber OOH. In the initial roll-out in April 2020 Uber OOH promises to bring car-top ads with 1000 cars in Atlanta, Dallas, and Phoenix (15 additional US cities have been identified for future roll-out according to their website). These 1000 vehicles estimate a monthly volume of 180 million impressions where the impressions counts would be provided by a third-party organization called Geopath – the out-of-home industry’s non-profit auditing body for the audience measurement. According to its website, it would be supporting static (.jpg/.png) content, full-motion video (.mp4) and animated content (.gif) and provide real-time performance reports online which would include, quality of ad plays delivered, impressions, eCPM, maps showing where each of the ad plays were delivered, and later in the year deeper audience insights reports from Adomni’s Audience IQ technology.

What’s in it for marketers and advertisers?

DOOH has opened a whole new gamut of opportunities for marketers especially with programmatic DOOH coming into the picture. And with car-top ads provided by the likes of Uber and Lyft marketers now have more ways than one to appeal to their target audience with ads. Let’s look at the opportunity here for them.

  1. Rich media ads targeted based on location, the density of population, time of the day, and hyper-targeting options such as weather conditions.
  2. Multi-device targeting by syncing ads with digital billboards or re-target exposed audiences on their mobile devices later (using platforms such as Adomni’s Audience IQ technology) for increasing advertising effectiveness.
  3. Not just B2C even B2B marketers can make use of this by running ads in their target audience’s office locations at specific times.
  4. Who knows there might be targeting options available in the future where advertisers would be able to target specific profiles of cab users and display car-top ads when they are picked up or dropped at their destination and re-target them with in-car or mobile ads.

The future of DOOH looks bright, doesn’t it?

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