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Insights & Data
5 Reasons Why Digital Outdoor Advertising Helps a Brand Scale

📈 Increases consumer exposure.

→ Digital out-of-home (DOOH) is a direct, measurable way to reach a wide network of people in a very short span of time.

📈 Enhances engagement.

→ DOOH content can be mind-blowing. It can offer interactive experiences to drive engagement.

📈 Targeted advertising.

→ Data-driven tech allows your digital OOH billboard to deliver targeted messages to the right audience at the right time and place.

📈 Flexible and scalable.

→ DOOH campaigns can be quickly adjusted, making it an easy channel to tailor to any brand.

📈 Tracking and analytics.

→ The tracking and analytics capabilities of DOOH advertisements are second to none. They provide key insights, enhancing and improving future campaigns.


Insights & Data
Trends in Out-of-Home: How Dynamic and Live Content create impactful campaigns

Dynamic and Live content has become a significant trend in out-of-home advertising. Digital technology and new opportunities for data integration have enabled more creative and contextually relevant ad campaigns that help brands become active social participants. However, what sets live content within out-of-home advertising apart from other media options?


Live streaming and live content can take various forms, such as live sports scores, social media feeds, and interactive video streaming. This type of live Out-Of-Home (OOH) messaging has become a powerful tool for brands to establish a connection and interact with their audience in real time.

With the availability of live streaming options and the increasing broadcasting capabilities of social media platforms, user-generated content has become a crucial component of live advertising. Brands prefer OOH to broadcast such content, as it helps them to establish a presence in the daily lives of their audience when they are out and about.


Live out-of-home (OOH) content and user-generated content complement each other perfectly. OOH campaigns are famous for their exceptional ability to build brand recognition and fame. By allowing consumers to showcase themselves on a billboard, campaigns establish authentic consumer connections and seamlessly integrate themselves into the lives of their target audience. From the participant's and the audience's perspectives, featuring real people live in a campaign promotes brand trust and generates organic social media coverage that can make a campaign go viral.

An excellent example of this is adidas takingover The Triple Crown with its “I’m Possible” user-generated content (UGC) campaign. Through social media, adidas invited women to share photos of what sports means to them, along with their stories of turning the impossible into possible every day.Every post shared, irrespective of the sport, was turned into billboards across the city in real-time, with the centrepiece being The Triple Crown on Sheikh Zayed Road. The billboards, in return, became countless pieces of social content, starting conversations about making sports more inclusive.


Many of us are more connected than ever; therefore, we expect immediate communication and instant gratification. However, even with all this technology, physical experiences still make a more lasting impression. Out-of-home (OOH) advertising is a familiar presence in the daily lives of urban consumers. Brands can go beyond typical advertising goals of raising awareness, amplifying a brand message or building interaction by integrating live content in their OOH communication. They can start a conversation with their audience, creating a more natural, human dialogue in the moment.


OOH (Out-of-Home) advertising has traditionally been considered a relatively inflexible medium. However, with the advent of digitisation, brands can now be reactive and proactive. By creating educational, informational, or entertaining campaigns, live content allows brands and consumers to be in sync. Advertisers can display content tailored to the audience's time, place, and mood, demonstrating an understanding of their needs. When a brand understands the audience's needs, it fosters deeper connections and trust among consumers.


Data integration in Out-of-Home (OOH) advertising can provide seamless, real-time updates to cater to the audience's requirements. It includes live dynamic content such as moderated social media feeds, sports scores, or current browser search trends. This type of content helps the brand to be more helpful and in sync with the audience's interests.

By harnessing BackLite Intelligence and utilising a live data feed, we proudly presented the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup scores across our digital network at Dubai Festival City Mall.


As younger generations make up a more significant portion of the consumer market, they expect more from brand messaging. Specifically, they will desire instantaneous, current, and genuine audio-visual content. Fortunately, the platform for delivering such contextual, in-the-moment campaigns is ready for mass rollout. This is due to the widespread availability of content-ready digital panels and cost-effective OOH data integration. The success of these campaigns now depends on advertisers' creativity and awareness of consumer needs.

At BackLite Media we have an ecosystem of partners and data sources that enables us to create dynamic content campaigns and make your brands stand out. Our Digital Out-of-Home Network comprises over 400 outdoor and in-mall screens that allow you to target audiences with different demographics. We have the capability to set triggers and personalise your campaign based on your objectives to ensure that you get the best results possible.

Contact us today to learn more about our services.


Insights & Data
The Future of DOOH - How A.I will Revolutionise the Outdoor Advertising

Digital Out-of-Home (DOOH) advertising is undergoing a significant transformation driven by advancements in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT), which are revolutionising advertising experiences and how consumers interact and engage with brands, in a new way, than ever before, to create personalised, impactful, and highly effective campaigns.

Here’s why I’m super excited to see what AI can bring to the world of DOOH →

🤖 Audience analytics and targeting: AI tech, like facial detection and computer vision, helps advertisers analyse audience demographics, so that they can create more specific, targeted campaigns.

🤖 Contextual relevance: AI analyses contextual information, like time of day, location and even foot traffic, to adapt and enhance the DOOH advert in order to maximise reach and engagement.

🤖 Predictive analytics: AI algorithms can predict trends and patterns in audience behaviour, helping advertisers anticipate when, and where certain audiences will be present.

🤖 Integration AI: can integrate with other tech to create interactive experiences. Sensors and cameras enable gesture recognition, allowing audiences to physically interact without physical contact.

🤖 Content optimisation: AI algorithms analyse real-time data, like weather conditions and traffic patterns to adjust content on billboards.

What are you excited to see change in DOOH with the advent of AI?


Insights & Data
Digitisation and data in the UAE

The proliferation of digital in out-of-home (OOH) advertising across the globe has driven the need for data. Reliable data has driven the ability to plan and buy digital OOH (DOOH) by impressions. The ability to plan and buy by impressions has driven the growth of programmatic DOOH.

But where are we, the UAE, in this timeline? Well, we’re at the start, the middle and the end at the same time. The proliferation of digital in OOH across the globe has driven the need for data. There has been a boom across the globe in LED conversions and builds, driven mainly by the UK and Australia, with 59 per cent and 56 per cent respectively of the total out of home revenue attributed in those markets to digital, according to PWC’s estimates. In comparison, in the UAE only 11 per cent of the overall outdoor spend is represented by digital, according to Ipsos.

Clive Humby coined the phrase, “data is the new oil”, and although we’re in the Middle East, the phrase is still relevant when analysing the growth of audience-led, data-driven OOH campaigns. Data alone isn’t the answer, though. Like oil, if unrefined it can’t be used; it needs to be broken down and analysed for it to have value. Right now, data is still in its infancy in the UAE, but there are many new companies offering solutions, with different and alternative systems for measurement and aggregation.

Reliable data has driven the ability to plan and buy DOOH by impressions. With the increased availability of data and the launch of our new Digital Icons on Sheikh Zayed Road, we have seen a surge in dialogue around impressions-based, audience-first campaigns. The ability to pick the hours of activation, to target a specific moment in time, to react to external factors has piqued the interest of many clients and agencies. Only through the use of digital can you bring these campaigns to life. The leading example of data use so far this year was the campaign for YSL – Libre, using Sheikh Zayed Road, targeting specific hours of the day to capture an affluent retail audience outside of the peak commuter hours. This campaign was activated programmatically by The Trade Desk, via Broadsign Reach.

The ability to plan and buy by impressions has driven the growth of programmatic DOOH. With the launch of The Triple Crown – three prominent digital billboards on Sheikh Zayed Road near Mall of the Emirates – we have seen an unprecedented rise in demand for digital, but the requests and activations can still be very linear. To truly take advantage of this great product, we need to see more dynamic campaigns activated with a more audience-first mentality. Of course, OOH will always be a one-to-many mass audience solution but the more relevant the message, the more effective your message will be.

For programmatic out-of-home to truly flourish in this market we need to define the currency; we need to establish one data source as the benchmark for the region. With BackLite Intelligence, we aggregate data from multiple sources then analyse it with custom algorithms, generating insights around traffic flows and audience demographics, to ensure a transparent and robust measurement. Still, this solution is only available for BackLite customers; for the wider industry to adopt programmatic DOOH there needs to be greater collaboration. Programmatic DOOH is still at its infancy and will evolve alongside technology and data measurement to realise its true potential.


Insights & Data
Dubai Festival City Mall Sees Major Increase in Visitors Over Eid

Festival City Mall, Dubai saw a massive jump, with an enormous total of 4.7 million impressions over the Eid weekend, and a peak of nearly 1.2 million impressions on Friday 14th  May. This was 233% higher than the peak for Q1 and 391% higher than the Q1 average, making them the most impressive stats of 2021 so far.


Insights & Data
Advertisers are Ecstatic with Traffic

Dubai is known for its bustling streets, and 2022 was no exception. Traffic in the city has increased recently, but this is good news for out-of-home advertisers. In 2022, our billboards in Dubai saw record-high impressions, with millions of people seeing our billboards each month.

Last year, motorists in UAE cities lost an average of 22 hours as a result of traffic, according to the 2022 Global Traffic Scorecard published by mobility analytics firm Inrix Inc. The research focuses on metropolitan areas in order to evaluate traffic congestion. According to the data, the 22 hours drivers spent waiting in traffic was a 54% increase from 2021. The increase in traffic has been attributed to several factors, including the city’s growing population and the influx of tourists.

While traffic congestion can be frustrating for some, it has excellent advantages for out-of-home advertisers, as more people are exposed to their ads. By understanding consumer behaviour in traffic, brands can target their advertising efforts to reach a broad audience and maximize their return on investment.

After seeing the traffic volume increase report, we decided to look at our own data on BackLite Intelligence. Unsurprisingly, our billboards in Dubai saw a considerable surge in impressions in 2022 during Dubai’s peak tourist season. Our static billboards on Sheikh Zayed Road saw over 150 million impressions and over 30 million pass-bys during October alone.

The significant increase in impressions is a testament to the effectiveness of out-of-home advertising. This is especially true in a city like Dubai, where people are constantly on the move. We are proud to have seen such success in 2022, and we look forward to continuing to reach more people in the future.


Insights & Data
Tech Innovations in Out-of-Home Media

We recently spoke to Ashin John, our Digital Operations Manager, to learn more about impressive tech innovations in out-of-home media and what BackLite is doing to use these technological innovations to our advantage.

Enhancements in digital display technology:

- Higher resolution: Narrow pixel pitch LED displays refer to displays with a small distance between the individual LED lamps, resulting in higher resolution and more detailed content. Higher density of LEDs per square meter results in a wider colour gamut that helps to create more vivid and dynamic content.

- Greater contrast: Improvements in technology have led to improvements in contrast ratio, resulting in deeper blacks and brighter whites.

Better viewing angles: With the continuous development of LED technology with SMD, viewing angles have greatly improved, and content remains visible when viewed from different positions.

Increased energy efficiency: Power consumption of large format LED displays has reduced over the years and will continue to reduce with technological advancements. Integrating light sensors with the display system helps adjust the display’s brightness for optimum viewability based on the ambient light levels, which helps manage or reduce power consumption.

Dynamic Content Capabilities:

Advertisers can use BackLite’s dynamic content solutions to create engaging and interactive campaigns that more effectively capture the audience’s attention. Advertisers can use dayparting in campaigns to target specific audiences by displaying different content at different times of the day.

Content management platforms allow easy integration of real-time data in digital content, which we can publish across multiple screens and locations. Networks process and analyse real-time data based on different parameters, which can promote actions such as changes in content and schedule. Some examples of dynamic content campaigns produced and executed by BackLite Media include:

  • Weather and news updates
  • Social media feeds
  • Sports scores and news
  • Countdown to events and TV shows

Audience Measurement: Audience measurement platforms are tools used to measure impressions and engagement in OOH advertising campaigns. These platforms provide detailed information about audience demographics, attention time and engagement patterns.

With the advancement in artificial intelligence and machine learning, computer vision technologies collect data based on detections of the number of people exposed to Digital Out-of-Home (DOOH) advertising. Advertisers can use this data to deliver highly targeted campaigns based on the audience’s demographic.

Geolocation platforms use data from mobile signals to track the location and movement of people to generate insights about the audience.

Automation allows content management platforms to ingest audiences to generate campaign performance reports.

Some technological challenges that face the industry and how BackLite is overcoming these challenges:

Security: DOOH displays are vulnerable to hacking and other cyber-attacks. BackLite takes security measures to protect the networks and system, which include:

  • Multiple authentication layers and limit access to authorised personnel
  • Periodic update of software (operating system, content management system and 3rd party applications)
  • Firewall to control incoming and outgoing network traffic
  • Regular monitoring of logs and network traffic

Integration with 3rd party systems: Content management systems must be integrated with other technologies, such as audience measurement tools, programmatic platforms, and real-time data sources. BackLite performs integration testing in a controlled setup before deployment to the production/live environment.

Data privacy: DOOH systems collect data from people exposed to advertising or interacting with the displays. BackLite partners with solution providers who comply with data privacy regulations to ensure data is collected and stored securely.


Insights & Data
An Interview with Maud Moawad, CEO & Founder of Seventh Decimal

What are some challenges that you’re working to overcome at the moment?

Having been in the market since 2020, I would say that Seventh Decimal overcame some significant challenges in terms of spreading awareness and getting the endorsement of major stakeholders on the measurement methodology. Now that Streach is rolled out and is heavily used by the industry, some new, yet smaller, challenges emerged that we are focusing on, such as:

  1. Remaining relevant in what we are offering to all stakeholders.
  2. The level of customisation on the system.
  3. Its interoperability and connection with other ad tech (like DSPs/SSPs) or trading desks, among others.

Additionally, I would also like to highlight that some challenges exist in the industry that impacts us as a measurement system but are beyond our capacity to solve solely, and that is why we invited stakeholders to a round table on a technical committee to discuss those challenges and prioritise them based on the industry demand.

I believe that you’re creating a technical committee. Would you please tell us a bit more about this? How is the formation of the technical committee progressing?

Oh yes, indeed, a technical committee to launch a JIC (Joint Industry Currency) was created and includes representatives from the media agencies (MCN Group, Publicis Media Group and Omnicom Group) and media owners (Al Arabia, BackLite Media, Elevision, Hypermedia, and MPN).

The technical committee will have to take collective decisions to standardise, enrich and empower the existing OOH media measurement system.

The topics of the round table include:

• Standardisation of Ad formats

• OOH Inventory naming conventions and unique identifiers

• Metrics Nomenclature, definitions, and calculations

• Transit and place-based media

• Introduction of additional qualitative metrics

We were extremely happy with the warm welcome that stakeholders showed to our initiative, supporting us in driving a mid to long-term roadmap for the OOH media measurement system in the UAE.

What are Seventh Decimal’s plans for the near future?

This year advertisers have started looking at OOH measurement and data to analyse their campaign’s performance and rethink their OOH strategies. Consequently, we are forecasting major growth in the industry.

We will continue to support agencies and advertisers in their efforts to highlight the potential of OOH; Through the measurement data of Streach (Reach/Frequency/Impressions), advertisers can now accurately model and fairly value the contribution of OOH to their overall media mix and assess their ROAS. Seventh Decimal will extend its support to provide data for agencies with the ultimate goal of increasing the OOH’s share of the omnichannel marketing spend.

One such initiative is the partnership between Seventh Decimal, BackLite Media and Reprise/MCN Group, which we announced a few weeks ago, to collaborate for studies dedicated to the understanding of OOH’s return on ad spend (ROAS) across MCN brands.


Insights & Data
Neurons: Using Neuromarketing Research to Take the Guesswork Out of Artwork

BackLite has partnered with Neurons Inc., a neuromarketing research company specialising in using neuroscience and behavioural science to understand consumer behaviour and decision-making processes. Neuromarketing research uses EEG and other techniques to measure brain activity in response to marketing stimuli. Their suite of neuroscience tools is called Predict, a cloud-based attention prediction AI.

Predict AI is built on consumer neuroscience data measuring:

+120K reactions of high-quality eye-tracking technology

+100B data points of eye movements and brain responses

Coupled with data from 120K reactions to high-quality eye-tracking technology and over 100 billion data points of eye movements and brain responses, Predict AI has become remarkably accurate — reaching 95% accuracy for its models. Visual heat maps, fade maps, and benchmarks can all be conveniently accessed from Predict. Because of this, BackLite is better equipped to effectively target, empathise and influentially forecast attention on our platforms.

This solution estimates a campaign’s creative performance through various image processing functionalities, producing a heatmap (static or video). The tool is based on a deep machine-learning model. It is designed to help advertisers understand whether their OOH creative will likely attract the right audience’s attention in the right places. BackLite can provide saliency heatmap reports to its advertisers before the campaign to identify elements such as call-to-action and branding for improvement to increase message memorability, recognition, and effectiveness


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