Outdoor advertising growth surges

Outdoor media growth almost tripled last year, rising a record 7.1 per cent to $543.8m including a jump in revenue for every quarter compared to 2012.

The record growth for the sector is compared to a rise of 2.7 per cent to $507.7m in 2012 when it first cracked the $500m mark.

Figures from the Outdoor Media Association’s (OMA) upcoming annual report, obtained by ProPrint, show the industry grew in every quarter of 2013 compared to 2012, giving it 15 quarters of solid growth out of the past 16.

First quarter revenue was up three per cent to $122.2m, second quarter up 5.2 per cent to $126.5m, third up 8.6 per cent to $132.3m and fourth up 10.8 per cent to $162.8m – rebounding from a drop in revenue for Q4 2012 compared to 2011.

The industry’s rise continued in the first quarter of 2014, but only rose 1.75 per cent versus 2013.

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The growth is in part driven by the explosion of digital out-of-home advertising, which is up 50 per cent from 2012 and now makes up 11.3 per cent of total revenue.

Digital’s upward trajectory is likely to continue as high-eyeball areas like shopping centres and airports increasingly switch to digital screens.

The result for the print-heavy roadside category was mixed with billboards down 2.2 per cent to $178.5m but other roadside print advertising – including street furniture; taxis, bus and tram wraps and signs; and other small format ads – rose 8.1 per cent to $196.2m.

The two categories, which are still almost entirely print, make up about 70 per cent of out of home advertising. Transport (including airports) rose 8.3 per cent to $85.4m and retail jumped 20.2 per cent to $83.6m.

OMA chief executive Charmaine Moldrich is optimistic about the growth pattern continuing in 2014.

“It is an exciting time to be working in Out-of-Home, we are growing at a time when other traditional channels are finding it increasingly challenging to connect advertisers with their customers,” she says.

“Research shows Australians are spending more and more time outside and are increasingly using technology to engage with out of home advertising.

“Outdoor continues to be an effective broadcast medium, while continuously innovating with new technologies to increase consumer impact and interaction.”

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