Outdoor Media Centre: Customer Journey Research

Source: http://www.outdoormediacentre.org.uk/

Out-of-Home advertising influences the young, affluent, urban and mobile to purchase.

Out-of-Home links strongly to social media and mobile search.

OOH is strongly involved at every stage of the Customer Journey.

Of all effective encounters, ad media deliver more than non-media.

April 18, 2012. A study conducted for the Outdoor Media Centre (OMC) by ICM Research and On Device Research (ODR) has revealed that outdoor advertising has a strong influence on consumers, nudging them along towards the purchase at every phase of the Customer Journey.

The Customer Journey research found a role for non-media encounters such as word of mouth and hands on use of the product. But advertising media was found to be a more effective stimulus to purchase, with a higher share of effective encounters than non-media.The customer journey stages defined for the research consist of the following:

Absorbing information, ie passively receiving information but not actively looking
Planning a purchase, ie actively planning to buy a product and building a shortlist
Obtaining a product
Sharing information about it afterwards

 

The study confirms that the customer journey has become more complex with the availability of information through social media and the internet. Far from being a linear one-way route, the new path to purchase is convoluted, with feedback loops and backwards steps as new information becomes available, both enabling and confusing the buying decision.

The research found that encounters with outdoor advertising led to a high degree of positive feelings, and also actions. The study confirmed that Outdoor’s key audiences are young, affluent, urban, connected and mobile. These are the groups who are both most heavily exposed to outdoor ads and most likely to respond to them.Results also showed that outdoor-exposed audiences are strongly correlated with social media use, and are more active than the population at on social media at every stage of their journey. A higher level of outdoor ad exposure led to a higher propensity to search online and buy products as a direct result of Outdoor advertising. Outdoor is also the medium most highly associated with mobile internet search.

The study also examined 9 different product categories, namely cars, fashion, travel, personal finance, telecoms, drinks, perfume, films and pay TV.

Of all the encounters logged at the diary stage, TV and Outdoor advertisements were by far the most numerous within media, while word of mouth and hands on use of the product were most numerous in the non-media encounters.

Each medium showed a stronger share of voice at one or other phase of the customer journey: TV at the Absorbing phase, Online at the Planning phase, Radio and Newspapers at the Obtaining stage, and Social media at the Sharing stage. Outdoor is the strongest of all media at the Obtaining stage and the second strongest at all the other three phases. This demonstrates a key role for Outdoor at every stage of the Customer Journey.

Mike Baker, CEO of the Outdoor Media Centre said:

“The study helped us more fully understand the customer journey and showed us that consumers do not make linear decisions any more. The path to purchase is now fraught with feedback loops and many stops and starts. The good news for those of us who work in advertising and media companies is that media still represents the majority of the stimulus to purchase. Advertising works.”

The static stage of the research was commissioned from ICM and involved an online sample of 1,537 nationally representative GB adults to provide insight into how people see themselves at different stages of the customer journey, and what information sources they use. The dynamic stage was handled by OnDevice Research, with 2,141 participants recording their brand and advertising interactions over a two week period. Respondents noted encounters which they felt were relevant with one of 9 different product categories by using a mobile-based diary to record their reactions and behaviours in the context of advertising and non-advertising encounters. More than 13,000 such encounters were recorded.