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Posterscope aims Rs 650-cr business in FY21, identifies programmatic DOOH as key growth driver

The OOH agency, which started with Rs 250 crore, succeeded in growing its business to around Rs 350 crore in 2018. In conversation with, Haresh Nayak, Group MD, Posterscope South Asia, says the key focus area would be programmatic DOOH

Posterscope, an out-of-home (OOH) communications agency from Dentsu Aegis Network (DAN), aims to take its business to the Rs 650-crore mark by the financial year (FY) 2021. The agency, which at present rolls out a business of Rs 450 crore and is growing 24% y.o.y for the last five years, had made Rs 350 crore in 2018.

Haresh Nayak

“We are aiming to take our business to Rs 650 crore by 2021,” said Haresh Nayak, Group MD, Posterscope South Asia.

Nayak says programmatic DOOH is one of the key growth segments in the out-of-home space, adding 12% of the total revenue of Posterscope, up from 2% earlier. The agency eyes Rs 15-20 crore revenue from DOOH in FY20.

According to Nayak, the acceptance of programmatic DOOH among marketers has increased in the past two years and mature brands have incorporated it in their campaigns. “Our aim for this year is to educate newer clients about programmatic and make them invest in programmatic DOOH advertising,” he said.

“Brands such as Vivo, H&M, Jaguar, etc., invest in programmatic DOOH. With mature clients, the acceptance is easy because they know the impact of programmatic,” he said.

Nayak says programmatic DOOH will grow up to 5-10% in the OOH industry this year because of increasing demand from brands. “Home-grown brands such as Parle Agro, Appy Fizz, and Skoda are good believers and spenders of programmatic DOOH,” Nayak said.

Apart from this, Nayak sees a growth of 19-20% in programmatic in the digital out-of-home space in the next three years. “I think in two years, programmatic DOOH will do wonders in the Indian market,” he said.

The agency had last year formed a programmatic dashboard called ROH (real-time out-of-home), which allows brands to plan digital out-of-home. “We have eight triggers in it, which makes programmatic OOH easier for client understanding and agency working.”

“Today we have 23,000 screens that can go live at any moment as demanded by the client,” Nayak said.

Speaking on the benefits of programmatic to marketers, Nayak said, “Programmatic optimises brand spends, it gives efficiency and drives engagement with the consumers.”

He gave an example of McDonald’s which, with programmatic DOOH, can roll out a breakfast campaign by taking an 8-11 am advertisement slot. Other brands can follow, depending on their campaign motive.

According to Nayak, it depends on the agency on how they add credentials, bandwidth and technology to support their clients’ initiative for a programmatic DOOH campaign. “A full solution-provided campaign will definitely back the growth and awareness of programmatic in India,” he said.

On how Posterscope convinces brands for programmatic DOOH, Nayak said, “We talk to right people within the brand who are able to understand the importance and relevance of the medium. Showing them the possibilities that can happen over programmatic with an assurance of their money not getting wasted, also showing them the tech and how it can be used to engage the targeted audience by the brand through disruptive element in the brand communication.” He says programmatic will bring a shift from blind buying to informative buying, from analytical buying to artificial intelligence buying.

The agency is testing some technologies in which the digital screen will decide whom to show the ad on the basis of profiling of the audience. The profiling will be set by the brand. “Such smart digital campaigns are already there in mature markets of Taiwan and Thailand. We want to bring things in India that are much ahead of the curve and make sure we are able to consolidate and dominate our position in the market,” he said.

On the challenges of programmatic, Nayak said, “The biggest barrier is lack of government initiative to promote media and traditional clients not agreeing to share digital screens with 10 different brands.”

“The problem by traditional clients is that they see the digital screens from the traditional point of view and don’t wish to share the digital screen with 10 other brands, which is same when we see in other mediums too be it TV, OTT or digital space. It’s all about acceptance and maturity of the business and I think we are seeing disruptive growth and we have built up our scale in that line.”

Speaking on the future of traditional OOH, Nayak said, “The world’s oldest medium will continue to grow at its regular pace. The medium doesn’t have an ad skip and ad block and that’s one great advantage.”

According to Nayak, Europe will have programmatic DOOH this year. In APAC regions, Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia countries will be ahead in programmatic OOH. However, UK, USA and Taiwan are far ahead with this segment.

“Our growth was only possible with our re-invention. We didn’t only re-invent ourselves in the traditional OOH space but also added other dimensions. To target captive audience, we have ambient OOH, we have seen a huge growth there. Two years back, we launched ROH, where we thought of bringing experiments and engagement in the programmatic space. These are the two initiatives which as an agency we have taken for continuous growth.”

“As a brand we are growing consistently and aggressively. We don’t call ourselves an outdoor advertising company, for us it is all about being location specialists,” he says.

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