2019 Upfronts: The Power of Movement

Last week, we held our annual Upfronts event at the London Transport Museum. The theme of the event – The Power of Movement – explored Out-of-Home (OOH)’s role in the physical movement of transport and people across the UK, the opportunity of full motion in digital OOH, the power of data to understand consumers’ behaviour and reach them on-the-move and moving people emotionally through OOH advertising.

Exterion Media 2019 Upfronts The Power of Movement

Bringing our theme to life around them, we welcomed our guests into a gallery filled with pre and post war public transport vehicles and a large interactive ‘Connections Map’ - a live projection of London’s transport network. Attendees were free to view the surrounding galleries on design and engineering and walked through displays on the forthcoming Crossrail delivery and Elizabeth line en route to the auditorium. 

Nigel Clarkson, Chief Revenue Officer of Exterion Media UK, kicked things off with his opening talk on our theme for the day and on the enduring power of OOH.

“We physically move millions of people every day across the UK”

Outlining how the theme of this year’s Upfronts was perfect for Exterion Media’s position as the biggest transport advertiser in the UK, he talked about physically moving the UK every day, accounting for 39.7m daily passenger journeys:

• We have the world’s biggest OOH contract in the London Underground

• We carry half of the UK’s rail population

• We are the main provider of UK bus advertising

• Our full-motion digital portfolio is capturing thousands of people every minute, engaging them as they journey through our environments

• We move people emotionally through OOH creativity, across classic, digital and experiential activations

Exterion Media 2019 Upfronts The Power of Movement

“OOH, by its very definition, hits people on the move, where no other channel can get close.”

He then talked through the ongoing transformation of the sector and why it continues to be a great brand-building channel. Looking to next year and beyond, automation of planning and trading OOH via technology platforms will become a key battleground as the industry figures out the right way forward.

What never gets lost in all of the talk of evolution and what the future holds, is the power of OOH to drive conversations and make people think and act. From the contentious Brexit battle bus to the recent Oatly campaign that delivered huge social debate and engagement, OOH continues to be a talking point and something that people look out for.

For us, and across the industry, there is real excitement around OOH. 2019 will certainly be a lively place for OOH as we make sense of our exciting future.

Exterion Media 2019 Upfronts The Power of Movement
Exterion Media 2019 Upfronts The Power of Movement

The first of our guest speakers was Lauren Sager Weinstein, Chief Data Officer at Transport for London (TfL), who took to the stage to talk about the role of data in keeping the capital moving and TfL’s mission to deliver better transport solutions through data. Explaining the various ways that TfL uses data to understand journeys, advise customers, and explore new ways of planning, she made the important point that “data itself is not enough, we must make it useful”.

This provided the perfect segue into a presentation from Mick Ridley, our Chief Data Officer, who showcased our own data capabilities in action. This included running through how our unique Data Planning Hub combines propreitary, first-party and third-party data, and how our data provides evidence on the power of bus advertising to deliver against movement, dwell and proximity.

He then ran a live demonstration on screen of how TfL Tube insights and Taps Segmentation can help answer a grocery shopping brief for reaching affluent, time-poor commuters – all in under a minute. He demonstrated how we’re using the data to create compelling product networks for our clients.

Mick ended by showing that, with 44% share of the UK’s rail audience, our data capabilities enable us to work with advertisers and franchise partners on connecting the onward journey.

Exterion Media 2019 Upfronts The Power of Movement

Dr Cristina de Balanzo of consultancy Walnut Unlimited was next up, talking about the power of creative and motion creative to move people to think, feel and act. Based on various neuroscience studies, she outlined her key markers for campaign success: storytelling, simplicity, movement and consistency.

From the storytelling power of a Tube platform classic ad to the creative simplicity of an impactful bus wrap, and finally to the power of video to grab our attention.

Exterion Media 2019 Upfronts The Power of Movement

Last of the guest speakers was Dr Rebecca Swift, Senior Director, Creative Planning at Getty Images. Rebecca brought Getty’s insights into creative image trends to show how images move people through which types of images resonate the most with people. Storytelling is the visual language of our age, and the way we engage with images – either static or video – can be influenced by our emotional outlook, our gender, and wider cultural and social trends.

Exterion Media 2019 Upfronts The Power of Movement

Finally, we had Andrea Marsh, Product Strategy Director, and Mark Heather, Commercial Director, running through ’19 things for 2019’ - a look forward to our strategy for 2019.

We’re excited to deliver new digital formats, from Ribbons to Landmarks, along with the eagerly-anticipated Elizabeth line launch. Building on our work this year, Creative Solutions, full-motion OOH and automated systems will continue to be developed into next year and beyond.

Exterion Media 2019 Upfronts The Power of Movement

In early 2019, we will be releasing new research on the power of bus advertising and the hugely important role it plays for the whole industry, as the OOH sector invests heavily in digital formats across city centres in the UK. We will also be launching a creative bus wrap competition for agencies, and will be putting a focus on Wrapped Trams in cities across the UK.

Likewise, we will be publishing new work on Scotland and the importance of transport across its major cities of, as well as a substantial piece of research in partnership with Kinetic and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) on the economic value of the commuter.

Along with our neuroscience research on the Power of Movement, our campaigns will be proving how movement runs through our business, and across the UK, to drive OOH advertising and transport network success in 2019.

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