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Colum Harmon

Colum Harmon, marketing director, PML Group, with this week’s take from the world of Out of Home

14th August 2020

Next off the rank…..

Another welcome addition to OOH’s roadside digital infrastructure this week with the launch of Adshel Live Roadside in Dublin. The Clear Channel digital screens are located at six high profile locations on Dublin city taxi shelters, targeting shoppers and commuters. They will be available to advertisers from cycle 18 (August 24th).

  • Adshel Live Roadside Format photos

These new locations will greatly complement the existing JCDecaux Digishelter network (digital bus shelters) which has proven hugely attractive to brands since its launch last year. This week has seen new campaigns on the network for advertisers including Mondeléz, HSE, Tipperary Water, McDonald’s and Subway.

  • A selection of Digishelter campaigns

Its been a busy week for our MD, Geoff Lyons. Geoff was a panellist on this week’s Advertising Matters webinar and a link to the recording can be found here. Geoff also featured in the Marketing Institute’s ‘In Conversation With..’ series and a link to that piece can be found here.

This week we also cover our usual mix of news and data around mobility, retail, leisure and consumer insight and its implications for Out of Home.


Regional Google Mobility Data

Google’s Mobility Reports show how visits and length of stay at different places or environments change compared to a baseline. The baseline is the median value, for the corresponding day of the week, during the 5-week period Jan 3–Feb 6, 2020. The graphic below shows data for some of the country’s more populous regional areas, outside of the main cities – Mayo, Kerry, Meath and Tipperary. The data relates to August 7th.

  • Google Mobility map of Ireland

Apple Mobility Index

Apple’s routing requests mobility data to Monday 10th August shows driving in Ireland is now +50% above January’s baseline for rolling seven-day average. Requests for walking routes have recovered to 90% of baseline. The figures also indicate that public transport as of Monday is now 59% of pre-Covid levels. Elsewhere driving in Northern Ireland is now +41% above baseline across seven days, while the UK is now +30%.

  • Apple Mobility Chart

Local lockdowns affect N4/N7 Traffic this week

Vehicular traffic has been almost exclusively trending in an upward trajectory in recent months but its no surprise this week that traffic on the N4 and N7 towards Dublin has dipped again, almost certainly as a result of measures to restrict movement from Offaly, Laois and Kildare. Outside of these areas though, Transport Infrastructure Ireland reports consistent patterns week on week with counters showing levels fluctuating from -6% to +7% across the country.

Journeys and users grow on bike share schemes

An indication of increased mobility in and around Dublin city centre comes in the form of new statistics from JUST EAT dublinbikes and JCDecaux, showing a monthly increase in journeys of 16%, for July compared to June. There was a cumulative increase of 38% compared to May, with June increasing by 18% compared to May. The sustained growth in journeys taken is indicative of greater movement and footfall into the city, as retail, restaurants and workplaces get back to business.

  • Just Eat Dublin Bikes New Branding

Meanwhile Bleeperbike, which operates in Fingal and Dublin city now reports more than 60,000 registered accounts and saw an increase of 770% in new user registration in Q2 2020 V Q1 2020. Bike trips using the scheme in that same period grew by 98%. The heatmap below shows Bleeperbike activity in July.

  • Bleeperbike map of Dublin in July


N26 data reveals post-lockdown consumer spending up 32%

Mobile Bank, N26 has released its own data which provides a snapshot of how Irish consumers spent money both on and offline before, during and after the Covid-19 lockdown. N26 analysed spending data for its Irish customer base across a range of consumer categories to see how consumers changed their interaction with cash, card and online payments methods over the seven-month period of January to July. The data shows that Irish consumer confidence is relatively strong post lockdown with overall spending (online and offline) up 32% on lockdown spend.

N26 has also released a ranking of the top merchants favoured by Irish consumers over the same period. The analysis shows that pre-lockdown, Lidl ranked as Ireland’s “Top Merchant”, followed by Amazon and Supervalu. This changed during and post lockdown, where Lidl became the second most popular merchant while Amazon took the lead. Supervalu consistently ranks #3 pre/during and post lockdown.

Also, food delivery apps have a new ally as they fight for business in an economy laid low by coronavirus: boredom. With many tired of home cooking they have turned to takeaway deliveries as a way to shake things up – even post lockdown. Online food delivery company, Deliveroo which was ranked #10 before lockdown, jumped up the rank to the nation’s fourth most popular merchant during lockdown, and post lockdown has managed to maintain this position. This indicates the extent to which Irish people have grown more accustomed to ordering their meals online.

Hot Drinks selling like Hot Cakes at Tesco

Latest data from Clear Channel and Dunnhumby shows sales of hot drinks, treats and household items were surging in Tesco in early July. Tea, coffee and beverages saw a 32% increase in sales from July 6-12 and overall, Tesco has seen sales growth of 5% in the period June 1 – July 12. In its most recent 12 weeks of recording, the level of spend per basket has increased by a massive 56%, indicating bigger and but frequent shopping trips as consumers navigate retail now. Clear Channel operate a network of 85 Tesco Live screens nationally.

  • Clear Channel research on Tesco Sales between February and July


COVID-19 Recovery Navigator

Dentsu Aegis Network in the States has published its latest Recovery Navigator report this week.  The extensive study covers much in terms of consumer behaviour but one we insight we have highlighted here is the different concerns held by the various generational cohorts.

  • DAN Research chart showing the different concerns among generations

This will have implications for how brands engage with these demographic groups through their marketing and advertising and is worth considering in the context of the Irish market also.

B&A’s ‘Shaping Ireland’s Future’

B&A’s third report in the ‘Shaping Ireland’s Future’ series looks at the domestic holiday experience. It reveals 31% of us switched to a holiday in Ireland with a huge proportion heading West. Also that lockdown has left us with a nagging sense of ‘unfinished business’ which the hospitality industry can tap into with the right mix of indulgence and safety.

Using OOH advertising in key locations can effectively communicate those attributes and insights such as these from B&A can only point to locations where larger audiences than usual will be for the remainder of 2020. Some of the main take outs from the study are summarised on the graphics below.

  • B&A research into people heading to the west of Ireland
  • B&A research into 2020 summer holidays


Cinema attendance on the up

Positive statistics this week from Wide Eye Media indicating that 53% of cinemas in the Republic of Ireland are open again including major chains such as Movies@, Omniplex and Odeon.

  • CineD screen welcoming back people to the Movies@ cinemas

According to Wide Eye Media “Although capacities are reduced due to social distancing, the level of ticket purchase is proportionally showing cinema-going to be as prevalent a pastime as before Covid-19. Admissions are already beating Wide Eye Media forecast data with the Russell Crowe’s Unhinged and 100% Wolf both proving popular. Week on week growth is +61% based on our last full week of admissions (w/e 30th July) and as at 6th August Omniplex alone reached 100,000 admissions since reopening.  Meanwhile, data from early July showed Irish chain Movies@ to be the #1 performing cinema chain in the world.”

Cinema is an OOH leisure environment with powerful digital and classic formats serving many sought after demographics. The Cine D network consists of 42 55” screens located in 22 cinema locations.

And finally..

Out of Home street furniture is on the frontline in the fight against COVID-19. South Korea has opened a high-tech new front in the battle against coronavirus, fortifying bus shelters with temperature-checking doors and ultraviolet disinfection lamps. To enter, passengers must stand in front of an automated thermal-imaging camera, and the door will only slide open if their temperature is below 37.5 degrees. A separate camera is installed lower down to test children.

  • Bus Shelter in Korea

Inside the glass-walled booths – which cost about 100 million won ($84,000) each – the air-conditioning systems have ultraviolet lamps installed to kill viruses at the same time as cooling the air. A dispenser provides hand sanitiser, and users are advised to wear face masks at all times, while keeping at least one metre apart from others. Free Wi-Fi is also included.

Since they were installed last week each booth has been used by about 300 to 400 people a day. To ensure passengers do not miss their bus, a panel displays estimated arrival times while a screen live-streams the traffic outside.