V&A Waterfront (Image source: V&A Waterfront)
Out of home media specialists BOO! Surprising Media Solutions have secured the rights to a five year deal with four prestigious South African retail malls – V&A Waterfront, Sandton City, Melrose Arch and South Point.
Over the next five years, BOO! will work alongside their property developers, architects, marketing managers and interior designers to identify prime locations either in or outside the malls, match relevant brands to them and activate the space.
“Signing a five-year deal with these malls is significant for the Out of home (OOH) industry as it shows that retailers are sitting up and taking notice of the value it adds, both financially and aesthetically.” says David McKenzie, MD of BOO!
“OOH has come a long way since the days of the one dimensional billboard; today it can wrap itself around buildings, travel alongside consumers on escalators and even crawl out of man holes. Able to turn unused space at shopping malls into dynamic media campaigns, it’s an attractive revenue driver for landlords, generating up to R3-million per annum in non-GLA (gross-lettable area).
“Malls are blank canvasses; they are teeming with unexpected advertising opportunities, and generate a good return for their landlords,” says McKenzie. “As no two sites are the same, each OOH campaign we develop is unique to its location and elevates its context. It engages and responds to consumers located in that area, dynamically and in real-life.”
Besides the new sites, other prime retail locations that BOO! activates include Hyde Park, 24 Central Sandton, Menlyn, Southgate and Maponya Mall in Soweto.
McKenzie adds, “Benefits for property owners are plentiful. Not only does OOH generate additional revenue streams besides its tenants and parking, it also increases shoppers’ dwell time and prompts them to purchase from tenant stores.”
Among the more unusual campaigns that BOO! has undertaken at malls is a giant camera set-up for FNB at Melrose Arch. Located in the Piazza, it took photos of shoppers as they passed by and posted them to social media in real-time. For Smirnoff, 5FM listeners were prompted to find creatively decorated London cabs in unusual areas around the mall precincts; then to phone in and win.
“Shoppers expect a brand experience within a mall. Alternative media needs to complement this experience with the end goal being to influence purchasing decisions. Many of the brands have been communicating the same message through traditional media (radio, magazines, TV). The ads in the mall close the loop in the communication process, while acting as additional revenue streams for the landlords,” says McKenzie.
On where the future of OOH is going, McKenzie believes it’s opened the door for brand managers and media buyers to integrate more seamlessly with malls and other properties’ landlords and commercial directors. “Brands can now collaborate with a property to develop unique content that is surprising, engaging and relevant instead of just broadcasting a message through a static billboard,” concludes McKenzie.