UK outdoor set for good times, says OAA's Baker

The out-of-home advertising sector took quite a kicking from 2007 to 2009 so the new CEO Of the Outdoor Advertising Association Mike Baker must be very relieved that things are looking up for the oldest medium in the world.

The sector had a buoyant start to the year with revenues up by 14.6 per cent to £204 million in the first quarter compared with the first three months of 2009, with large-format roadside and small-format retail benefiting from the steepest rise in revenues.

These figures compared well against other media, with radio and television estimated to be up by eight per cent, and now Baker is sensibly talking up the industry again, reckoning that the London Olympics will enable the medium to gain at least one per cent market share.

In his view advertisers should flock to outdoor during the Olympics because visitors will be out on the street and not consuming the broadcast or print media in the same way.

He also reckons that the COI budget cuts won’t hurt outdoor as much as other media. According the Nielsen the COI accounts for just £10 million, or 2.7 per cent, of the industry’s total revenue from the top 100 advertisers.

So it’s all looking good, in theory. All the media owners have to do now is show they've learned something from the last two years and stop making wildly unrealistic revenue guarantees when bidding for landlords’ contracts.

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About David O'Reilly

David is a former deputy editor of Campaign and writer for a number of leading titles including Management Today and the Sunday Times. He is a partner in The Editorial Partnership.