Route doubles investment in data to provide greater insight as OOH goes digital

Route renewed until 2023 with funding of over £20 million from the OOH industry

Route, the audience research body for out-of-home advertising in Great Britain, has commissioned an expanded and renewed six-year research project, which will provide even more rich and sophisticated data to the industry, as media owners continue to invest in digitisation.

Route produces audience estimates for out-of-home advertising and the data published tell subscribers how many people see an advertising campaign as well as how often they do so. The audience can be broken down in many segments including age, class, lifestyle and shopping habits. The information is used as the currency for planning, trading and evaluating advertising investment in the medium.

The research, which will again be carried out by Ipsos MORI on behalf of Route, has seen £18 million invested in fieldwork. The new contract begins on 1st April 2017. Over the six-year period data will be collected from 43,200 people. Each will carry a bespoke multi-sensory tracking travel meter for 14 days to reveal how people move in all public spaces.

The new research project will include:

  • Increased sample of 7,200 per annum (currently 4,300). This will allow planners access to far more granular data even when concentrating on a small geographic area
  • Revolutionary new “multi-sensory tracking” using smart GPS meters that track indoors as well as outdoors, second-by-second. The technology combines a 3D accelerometer, a gyroscope, a magnetometer, a barometer, a thermometer and a Wi-Fi module. This enables tracking when not in GPS range, for instance when on the London Underground
  • New standardised mapping for indoor venues, eg shopping malls and train stations. Upgraded to feature more detail, allowing planners to more accurately understand how people move around in these areas and which displays will be most effective for their campaign
  • Increased granularity at frame level, which means more data about each individual ad that is shown in a public space. This will give Route data even greater potential to be used in audience-based trading and support media owners in selling digital spots
  • Even more precise measurements for local campaigns, meaning that a planner can choose a smaller number of frames and still get robust measurement
  • Increased information about seasonal variance, so that planners can understand more about the fluctuation in audience by time of year

The first data from the expanded research will be available in Route 26, which will be released in Q1 of 2018.

The current underwriters of Route, the specialist media agencies, Kinetic, Mediacom Outdoor, Posterscope, Rapport and media owners, Clear Channel Outdoor, Exterion Media, JCDecaux and Primesight have been joined by Talon Outdoor for this new deal.

James Whitmore, MD of Route said, “The increase in funding allows us to expand the research and keep pace with what is a vibrant and fast changing medium. Advertisers use our data to understand how people move around in public spaces, both indoors and out. We are delighted to be able to extend the precision with which we measure “open sky” environments to incorporate indoor spaces such as the London Underground, shopping centres, railway stations, domestic airports and so on. The rise in investment demonstrates the importance that the industry places on providing advertisers with a state-of-the-art audience measurement system.”

Liz Landy, CEO of Ipsos Connect said, “Our new research, which is the largest ever GPS travel survey, will give the most detailed understanding of how people move around in GB. The new multi-sensory tracking will allow us a far richer breakdown on movement, especially in indoor spaces where to date the lack of GPS signal has meant additional, less precise, behaviour models have been required.”

Gideon Adey, Planning Development Director at Kinetic, & Chris Marjoram, MD at Rapport – co-Chairs, IPA Outdoor, stressed “Route allows us to provide robust data and understanding to clients and the new tranche of research will take that further. Increased granularity at a frame level by 15-minute increment allowing our systems to plan and evaluate OOH and particularly DOOH with even more precision and immediacy.”

Justin Cochrane, CEO, Clear Channel Outdoor and chair of Outsmart said, “As the market is moving towards a more digital future, the fact that we can use Route data in audience targeting, will enable us to create richer and more targeted out-of-home ads.”

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