The Evolution of Airport Advertising with Local Mobile Profiling

The airport audience represents a unique mix of individuals, yet despite today’s technology, airport advertising has simply not caught up to the real opportunity.

At my local airport (Denver International), I saw ads today for mining colleges (I work in advertising), female fashion & perfumes (I am male), American Airlines credit cards (I fly United) and database software (erm…?).

Yet in the hand of almost every person I saw, was a smartphone.

With today’s digital targeting capabilities those smartphones can serve as a unique identifier against which we can keep tabs on behaviors and intent in a live, ever-evolving profile. We then use that information to target mobile ads to the individuals relevant to you, and avoid wasting ad spend by skipping the people who aren’t.

As an example, many OOH (out of home) advertising companies say that “the airport is the best place to reach business people from global C-suite executives and financial leaders, to the new millenial business elite and connected trendsetters”. But of the many business traveller types there are, these represent just a small percentage, and that is of just 30% who are business travelers at all.

It is far more efficient to avoid those costly security bins, billboards and bathroom stall messages and instead focus on the individuals who matter to you.

When combined with live profiles, being at an airport often indicates that the person is desirable to most advertisers (more affluent, tech savvy, open minded). Hotel chains can advertise promotional rates to people waiting to check in for a flight, credit card promos with free airline miles to people who aspire to travel in first class, tourist attractions to new arrivers while they wait for their luggage….

Interestingly, according to JCDecaux’s website, 80% of business travelers extend a business trip to include leisure, and we know a significant amount of hotels are researched on mobiles. Most are early tech adopters and are therefore heavy smartphone users. They are socially influential too, with 56% having 250+ Twitter followers and 63% having more than 250 LinkedIn followers, and more than half say they would visit an advertisers website or do a search for the company….. on their smartphones…. where you could be advertising for a fraction of the spend!

And local mobile campaigns have some interesting operational benefits too.

  • show a different message to each relevant audience segment
  • turn campaigns on and off within minutes
  • no large minimum buys
  • test multiple messages against each other

Learn more about targeted advertising on mobile devices at airports, and after the airport visit, on FRESH Group. Come ask questions, we have done this for more than 200 of the Fortune 500 brands.