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Independent OOH ad consortium on course for 1bn annual views

Tyne Tunnel

A consortium of independent media businesses is celebrating after its smart advertising screens generated over 500 million impressions during its first six months.

Smart Digital Network, which is made up of Durham’s Smart Outdoor, Manchester’s Lucid Outdoor and Weslh partner Route Media, boasts over 300 screens across the UK, including road screens utilising real-time audience measuring software averaging 22 million impressions per week.

The partnership was established to help the independent media owners compete with the larger industry players and provide a better, more cost-effective service to media buyers.

Powered by data technology business Data Jam, each screen is fitted with real-time audience monitoring technology which allows the firms to monitor how many unique impressions displays generate.

In just six months, this has led to the network securing deals with brands such as JD Sports, TalkSport, DPD, and Hays Travel, and with its petrol convenience environment doubling with another 50 screens to be rolled out across Yorkshire, the North West and London in September, the group is confident about the future.

Julian Carter, commercial director at SDN, said: “The global outdoor advertising industry has long been dominated by a handful of players, however we want to offer an alternative to help change that. Whereas many larger businesses have a lot of red tape surrounding research & development, our independence means we have the flexibility to scale and adopt technologies at a much faster pace, like we have done with Data Jam’s real-time monitoring software.

“This has allowed us to massively improve the quality of reporting for marketeers seeking to understand exactly how their ads perform and break down the geographical barriers which previously would’ve held us back as individual operators, by bringing all of our units together into a larger group that can now run campaigns across the UK as opposed to just the regions in which we operate.”

Smart Digital Network comprises of its own regional large format media assets such as Edinburgh’s Murrayfield Stadium. the A19 and the Tyne Tunnel, plus a national network of 250 small format D4 assets in retail units, urban malls and local service stations across the UK.

SDN has also benefited from the renewed popularity of staycations, with its outdoor screens – particularly those at service stations – reporting a 15 per cent uplift in impressions during the Jubilee Holiday weekend.

Arran Javed, founder of Data Jam said: “Bringing together the Smart Digital Network with constant, real time audience data really shows the forward thinking nature of the consortium. We are over the moon to be working with businesses who clearly value data.”

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