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Let's get Ready to Rumble – The industry's view on Posterscope's Adweek session.

Let’s get Ready to Rumble’ was a one-off battle-of-the-brands event hosted by Posterscope to find the creative agency best able to exploit mobile & digital OOH media, fully realising the power and potential to target consumers out of the home. Three agencies, VCCP, Adam&Eve/DDB and M&C Saatchi had ten minutes to pitch their creative digital-out-of-home ideas for the client brand of their choice….and it was the audience that decided the eventual winner was to be Adam&Eve/DDB.
Folowing the session we asked the OOH industry what they thought…
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FEPE announce Annie Rickard will be speaking at the 56th Annual Congress in Budapest

In addition to Dave Trott as key note speaker, FEPE are very pleased to announce further speakers today.
Annie Rickard, Global CEO of Posterscope
Annie was a founder of Posterscope UK and, since 2001, has led the development of the global network which is now Posterscope Worldwide. The network now has over 600 people, in 48 offices around the world. Annie is passionate about being a pioneer for the medium looking for new opportunities for advertisers that better integrate the medium with search, mobile, content and transaction.
Annie last spoke at FEPE in Milan in 2012 and a lot has happened in OOH since then so we are loking forward to her insights on the current global issues facing our industry.
Nancy Fletcher, President and CEO OAAA
Nancy Fletcher, President and CEO of the Outdoor Advertising Association of America will be returning to the FEPE stage to update us on the American OOH industry.
For more than 20 years, Nancy Fletcher has been responsible for leading the out of home advertising industry’s legislative, marketing, and product improvement efforts. As an attorney and former media company executive,
Fletcher is ideally suited to meet the challenges and opportunities facing the industry. During her tenure as OAAA president & CEO, out of home advertising revenues have tripled and market share has doubled, in no small measure due to industry advancements and unity formed and fostered under her care.
Before joining OAAA, Nancy served as senior vice president for Patrick Media Group, the largest out of home media company of its time. She also spent more than a decade with Naegele Outdoor Advertising in various capacities including president/general manager of the Minneapolis/St. Paul division and general counsel for the parent corporation. Before joining the out of home industry, she worked as a young lobbyist at the Minnesota legislature.
The 56th FEPE Congress, titled “Your Audience is Waiting”, will be held between Wednesday June 10th and Friday June 12th at the Intercontinental Hotel, Budapest.
As always there will be 2 full days of presentations and high calibre speakers from across the world, all of whom will be bringing their unique viewpoints on the Out of Home industry.
Last year’s congress in Vienna was FEPE’s best yet, with over 300 delegates attending from 31 countries, both setting new records.
Via: FEPE

Has JCDecaux chosen the wrong time to abandon its trade body?

JCDecaux’s withdrawal from the Outdoor Media Centre is a surprising turn of events, writes the Posterscope chief executive Annie Rickard

We believe that it is pretty much universally acknowledged that the OMC of recent years hasn’t performed as well as it could and as well as other trade bodies have.
Last week, a major market player declined to join the others in their rapidly evolving plans to rebuild their trade body for the future.
It’s a surprising turn of events for many reasons.
Outdoor media is currently in good shape, so individual media owners could feasibly do their own thing, worry about their own bottom lines and the constituent parts could, by default, add up to a healthy whole.
However, it is indisputable that they would benefit more from having a successful trade body to make the medium more accessible to its users.
Audience currency Route would never have gained respect if players had taken a parochial rather than industry view.
It should be acknowledged that JCDecaux, alongside the other investors, played a major part in Route’s creation and now has a global gold standard in out of home audience measurement they can be proud of.
Maybe it’s not a problem that JCDecaux isn’t involved. After all, other media trade bodies have thrived without apparently important members. Channel 5 isn’t part of commercial TV marketing body Thinkbox and it hasn’t exactly held Thinkbox or its remaining members back.
It’s possible that, in the short term, like someone subtly not pulling their weight in a tug of war team, the absent member benefits from the efforts of others.
But it’s tough to keep that up in the long term and the thought that this might be a rationale for a temporary absence is unpalatable?
So what’s the future for OMC? Will it fade without one of the major industry players or will the remaining constituent parts rally and unite to prove their competitor wrong?
It’s important to realise that these are multi-billion dollar businesses where the (relatively small) investment in getting it right will be paid back many hundreds of times over if it is done properly. The sums required to run the OMC properly are pretty insignificant compared to the potential upside, which makes JCDecaux’s decision all the more puzzling.
Posterscope believes that this turn of events presents a unifying opportunity that the talented remaining members of the OMC will not want to pass up.
There are few shrinking violets in the outdoor business so basic human nature will take over and pugnacity will kick in. We are confident that an enlarged constituency of members drawn from the 50 media owners that make up the medium will unite to go on the offensive.
They will want to create initiatives and messaging that will, in the nicest way possible, force their estranged partner to knock at their door and ask to be readmitted to a party that it appears to have left prematurely.
Whether it will be welcomed with open arms once the others have taken the strain for a year or two will be up to the future munificence of the other members.

This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk

What My Mentors Taught Me

Top tips from Frances Dickens, chief executive and co-founder of media barter specialist Astus Group.
I expect my experience of school is similar to that of a lot of business people who have succeeded in their careers despite, rather than because of, formal education. I also expect like me that their teachers played less of a role in shaping their work ethic and values than the handful of key colleagues who noticed their potential, encouraged them to excel and bollocked them if they didn’t.
The role of mentors in the workplace is a perennial topic and I am a big fan of formal mentoring schemes such US-based Million Women Mentors and WISE here in the UK which both aim to push female talent in STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Maths) sectors from classroom to boardroom.
My own career has been focussed on the media industry, initially as account handler for billboard company More O’Ferrall and currently as chief executive of Astus Group, the UK’s largest media barter company, where I oversee a team of 35 and a business turnover of £132.2m in 2013. In terms of my career trajectory, there are two women who helped ensure I confounded my teachers’ expectations and whom I’d regard as mentors: Annie Rickard, chief executive of outdoor specialist Posterscope and Christine Walker, former chief executive of Zenith Media and latterly joint MD of Walker Media. I met Annie when she hired me to work at outdoor specialist Harrison Salison which later became Posterscope. Christine and I worked together on the board of out of home specialists Meridian Outdoor, the joint venture between Posterscope and Zenith Optimedia.
Here are five key lessons my mentors taught me:
1. Preparation is key
Going into a meeting with Annie or Christine was a terrifying prospect IF you hadn’t prepared, as both are absolute perfectionists. On the board of Meridian Outdoor they were often both present at meetings and I quickly learned to anticipate the questions they were going to ask ahead of time and to ensure any documents I was handing out featured meticulous spelling and grammar. On the plus side, I learnt that if I argued my case really well they were prepared to listen and go with my recommendations.
2. Always deliver on your promises
One of the founding principles of Astus Group is that we only take on deals we are sure we can deliver against. This is a lesson I learned from Annie and Christine for whom delivery on business promises is almost an article of faith. Both women inspired tremendous client loyalty because of their track record of coming through for clients. Following their example has served me well at Astus where our insistence on meeting client expectation means we have repeat business levels of more than 95%.
3. Keep calm and carry on
Christine and Annie have experience of leading multimillion pound companies and both have fairly formidable reputations usually perpetuated by people who haven’t actually met them. The bottom line is that you’ve got to be tough if you’re leading a company -people’s livelihoods and careers depend on you making cool, calm decisions. Christine and Annie are both very calm under pressure. Come to think of it I’ve met way more panicky blokes at the top than panicky women.
4. Lead by example
As my boss at Posterscope, Annie taught be everything I know about account handling. One thing I particularly admire about her, and which I have tried to make a part of my own leadership style, is that she would never ask her staff to do anything she hadn’t or wouldn’t do herself. What’s more if the task was in anyway tough, she would be there doing it with you. Both Annie and Christine had a very open door policy and again an open working culture is one of the cornerstones of my own business.
5. Give people you trust a chance
Annie and Christine are great at empowering people who they perceive to have potential by giving them more responsibility. This explains how I came to be on the board of Meridian Outdoor. When I started Astus, Christine gave me a chance to prove that media barter worked despite having a very bad experience of media barter as it was practised at the time. I really admire her for being prepared to put her misgivings to one side and listen to how my company was going to change the existing discredited business model by focussing on delivery first. When the time was right she allowed me to talk to her clients about media barter and when they agreed to try it out we made sure we exceeded their expectations.
Via: Huffington Post

It Cost £19m to Create. Is Route Worth It?

The audience measurement system took five years to make, but is it fulfilling its potential? Maisie McCabe reports.
Since outdoor’s big audience measurement system, Route, launched in February last year, most people in the sector have refrained from publicly criticising it. Yet mutterings of discontent persist. Agencies are still working out how they can use the data, or whether they should use it at all.
Route, or Postar 2 as it was originally known, was conceived as the most comprehensive outdoor media measurement system in the world. In addition to audience data for roadside panels (which Postar 1 provided), Route measures the reach of posters on the London Underground, on buses and in shopping centres. The project cost outdoor media owners £19 million and rolled out three years late. Some believe it should have been delayed even further.
The problem with developing an audience measurement system over five years is that media moves so quickly. Route used GPS meters to track people’s movements; now you can get that data and more from mobile operators. Moreover, by buying a planning system off the shelf rather than creating a bespoke one, industry insiders say Route missed an opportunity to get the most out of the high-quality data.
The two biggest specialists, Dentsu Aegis Network’s Posterscope and WPP’s Kinetic, decided not to rely on Route’s Telmar Quantum planning system. Instead, they built their own – at a significant cost – to crunch raw data. Interpublic’s Rapport waited until it had the data to make a decision and is now planning its own. Talon, which works with Omnicom agencies, uses the system along with other data sets.
Another issue (and some would say a minor problem) is the reliability of the information media owners provide about their poster sites. Grumbles from some quarters suggest some of the larger media owners have been slow to update information about the angle and viewability of their sites. Others counter that this process is happening but, due to the sheer volume of sites the Outdoor Media Centre needs to validate, it takes some time.
Although everyone can agree that the data is world-class, there is still much work to be done.

MAYBE Chris Marjoram, managing director, Rapport UK

“Route is genuinely ‘big data’, which is changing the way we plan and buy out-of-home. Yet not nearly enough is being done with this rich data set, which the industry as a whole must take responsibility for. Collectively, we must do better.”

YES Annie Rickard, chief executive, Posterscope

“Route is fulfilling its potential for Posterscope clients but only because we’re investing heavily behind it. Our system can deliver more audience. We’ve increased effectiveness by fusing Route with third-party data sources such as EE.”

YES Nick Mawditt, director of insight and marketing, Talon

“Route is giving out-of-home much more. But we have more to achieve in terms of translating behaviour into delivering real-time impacts. We need to embrace mobile data as part of Route so a more integrated solution is on offer.

NO Tim Bleakley, chief executive, Ocean

“Outdoor is where you can reach light TV viewers in droves and at a discount versus ITV. When Group M has diverted £100 million to digital out-of-home to prop up the declining ABC1s they reach on TV, I’ll know Route has taken root.”
Via: Campaign Live