How’s the world of advertising shaping up for 2021?

Economist motion activated billboard

As Hubspot rightly pointed out their recent blog, this is the thought rolling through many a marketers head as they look at how to deploy their 2021 budget effectively.

What’s the scores on the doors in the digital arena?

First off looking at digital advertising there’s lots of people out there throwing loads of cash at PPC and boosting posts because the internet has been at its busiest traffic wise over the last 12 months than ever before. But what’s the future in this arena?

  • 91% of respondents agree ads are more intrusive today compared to two to three years ago, and 87% agree there are more ads in general (HubSpot)

What does this mean for your advertising budget? Is that space over-crowded, are consumers not even paying attention to adverts, worse are adverts viewed as an annoyance? That’s the general theme from Hubspot but wait.

With personalisation comes deep connection to a brand or an advert. Utilising data and targeting your advert alongside great regular content on your channels is seen as a positive by people on social media today. They want meaningful adverts on their feed, perhaps not the tracking them all over the place adverts that are still prominent and feel a bit big brother but definitely things that reflect their interests, desires, budget and demographics like being able to shop local by seeing those businesses local to them. There’s been a really big initiative by Google to get local with your business if it’s relevant.

Digital advert helmans superbowl

Looking to be on the goggle box?

Let’s move on to TV advertising which let’s face it was always the arena for the mega big brands.

Things have changed over the last 5 years on that front and as more channels have appeared there are far more options are available for advertisers.

Last year unsurprisingly Leisure and entertainment TV advertising was down by -28% and the travel and tourism sector reduced spend by 31%. But other sectors splashed more cash than ever before to get an advert in especially if they could land a popular daytime program like Good Morning Britain (£3-4k costs PER ADVERT for a slot in that show is the 2021 average cost). – You could have a rear only advert for that!

To kick off an advertising campaign you’re looking at a around £60K to start a campaign. Choosing where to spend that money will be the thing to consider; spent wisely you can look to get £1 back for every £1.79 spent based on pre-COVID data.

The advice for success in this arena is media planning; make sure your advert is seen by the right people, on the right channel, at the right time. Not an easy one to do if budget is restricted or you don’t spend time understanding the demographics of the audience watching the channel you are proposing to advertise on.

Get it right and your returns can be awesome and there’s so many channels to choose from today that you could hit on a sweet spot that gives brilliant returns.

TV advert compare the market

And that leaves Out of Home (OOH) advertising…

This form of outdoors advertising covers a lot of options from billboards to taxi adverts. OOH is the fastest growing traditional medium in the UK still in 2021; yes Billboard advertising remains the number one. You might be wondering what COVID19 has done to numbers of people seeing an OOH ad as traditionally people have spent 70% of their time outside of their homes. Yes there have been areas where there’s been a significant reduction in pandemic times for example the London Underground has witnessed a massive decrease in travellers.

OOH is still relevant and very unavoidable; there’s no switching on, no scrolling, no tuning in. The beauty of this area REMAINS that people are exposed to it whether it’s the huge numbers walking around suburbs in pandemic times seeing buses with adverts driving by or walking past bus stop adverts or even ones that pop up on the road side (those self-made ones telling you about a small local shop or in previous days an event) or essential trips to the shopping centres past billboards as they drive in or park up.

And here’s the clever part; your OOH advert is always combined with using digital. Think the new Chilli marmite with their excellent billboard advert and twitter stuff being busy or the VW murals that have popped up combined with their TV advertising for a new electric car launch. That’s the beauty of OOH in 2021 as well as all the standard highly targeted, use of interesting media formats (ahem like TRUCKS ) and creative adverts the ROI is bigger and better than ever before because there’s simply no block function available which is definitely needed in 2021!

* The main picture is the Economist’s motion activated billboard