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Out \ Look: Driving Out of Home for Christmas

Aaron Poole, marketing executive, PML Group with this week’s Out \ Look on Out of Home

Driving Out of Home for Christmas

Out of Home advertising plays an especially big role at Christmas when members of the public take to the streets in droves to hunt down presents and festive bargains.

Seasonal events provide a unique opportunity for retailers, FMCG brands and media providers to build brand awareness, engage with consumers and increase sales.

As regards the busiest shopping event of the year, OOH can be a very effective tool to drive visibility, footfall and eyeballs directly off the high street and on to your products and services in the key pre-Christmas period. The creative possibilities of DOOH advertising makes the medium a perfect match to celebrate special occasions.

Our latest iQ research conducted by Ipsos indicates that over four fifths of Irish people plan to visit either a shopping centre or supermarket in December while two thirds will make their way down the local high street. 62% will enjoy the festive revelry in a pub or bar, 46% will visit the cinema, and 15% will attend a sporting event, rising to 22% of males.

Highest social class ABs substantially over index for visits to all locations spanning retail and particularly hotels (146), airports (144) and sports events (135).

In terms of noticeability of advertising on posters and digital screens in these places, cinema comes out on top with three quarters of people noticing ads there. This is followed by shopping centres (75%), airports (70%) and town centres (62%).

Focus on Christmas

The pre-Christmas period is the biggest retail occasion of the year. 92% of Irish adults who buy presents do so at Christmas.

46% of those who have purchased Christmas presents in the past 12 months say they usually start planning to buy presents in November – December.

Out of those who have bought Christmas presents in the past 12 months:

  • 47% shop for presents mostly in-store
  • 22% shop for presents mostly online
  • 31% shop for presents online and in-store equally

Source: TGI

68% of people are interested in digital screen messages relevant to seasonal events (OCS)

94% of people take notice of lighting/illumination effects on posters (OCS)

Gen Z have a strong preference for ads in traditional media over Digital ads. In fact, they are shown to be most receptive to Out of Home advertising (Kantar Ad Reaction)

Kantar reported that shoppers spent a record €1.3 billion on festive shopping baskets last December. Kantar’s research shows that the busiest shopping day of the year in 2022 was December 23, when tills rang up a total €94.4 million.

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission’s (CCPC) found that consumers expected to spend an average of €1,200 on Christmas shopping last year. Over one third of shoppers spent an average of at least €1,000, while households with children expected to spend almost €1,600. The 35-44 age group intended to spend the most over the festive season with an average of almost €1,500.

Planning Tip: Both place-based (fixed panels) and moving (buses and trams) OOH media combine to effectively target shoppers during this last window of influence.

Tháinig Gaeilge ar OOH i linn an tréimhse seo

Gaeilge agus fáilte! The Outdoor landscape has been peppered with a very Irish flavour in recent weeks as Irish language variants have been popping up across Out of Home formats ar fud na tíre.

This comes as the Official Languages Act begins to affect annals of public body advertising. Introduced towards the end of 2022, the act’s implications meant 20% of annual media investment must be done so as Gaeilge to promote Irish language use and visibility across the country.

Last year, a poll conducted by Ireland Thinks/The Good Information Project showed almost two-thirds of people (65%) would like to see most people using Irish on a daily basis. This figure was backed up by 63% of people who would like to hear more Irish used in daily life, with just 14% saying they would not want to hear more Irish.

More so, the poll also showed a clear desire for more prominent usage in the day-to-day lives for the younger audience: 75% of 18-24 year-olds feel Irish language use is either ‘important’ or ‘very important’ to their national identity compared to 53% of 55-64 year olds, while 27% self-reported fluency in the language.

Out of Home as a medium is perfectly suited to deliver the Irish language to audiences where they Live, Work, and Play. In the most recent Kantar ROI TGI survey 64% of Irish adults recall seeing at least one form of OOH advertising in the past week, rising to 69% of Dubliners, 75% of 16-24s and 67% of ABs. High impact formats showing off the written word are unmissable, and high dwell-time formats allow for audiences to both take in and understand the message being advertised.

Here are some campaigns delivering their ‘cúpla focail’ this cycle.


Planned by PML and Spark Foundry, the Eastern Midlands Regional Waste Management Protection Organisation have gone with a tandem Gaeilge agus Beárla approach to getting their message out  – butts belong in the bins. Displaying across Adbox, Purchase Point, Bus Shelters, and SuperValu Screens around the country, the Irish flavoured copy even comes with its own social tag #CoinnighÉireGlan, encouraging the smokers among us to cuir sa bhuscar é nuair a críochníonn tú an tobac.


Dublin City Council are keen to make sure your vote will count when it matters – especially for those about to turn 18, who can now pre-register via the new portal launched by Dublin’s 4 local authorities.

Planned by Core and PML, tá leagan Gaeilge á tháispeáint ar 48 Sheets, Metro Squares, Bus Shelters, Adshel Live Retail, Digishelters, dPods, agus iVisions.

Department of Foreign Affairs

Source out of home and PHD are behind the Department of Foreign Affair’s latest campaign targeting prospective workers who may be interested in European Policy. Running across a variety of high indexing formats for graduates and young workers, the copy featured the EU buildings towering behind a new starter atá réidh chun oibre.


Ná lig don fhiachas brú a chur ort – don’t let debt weigh you down, is the core message coming from the Insolvency service of Ireland. Planned by PML and Carat, the ISI have been on Outdoor continuously since the beginning of the year making it their mission to help those struggling with personal debt. Anois, tá an feachtas á thaispeáint ar Luas columns, Bus Supersides, Bus Shelters agus ar Commuter Points.


Continuing their ‘movie poster’ series of creatives, eFlow’s latest creative has fully embraced the cúpla focail ‘starring’ Seán Carr and Bríd Tollan (second names translating to ‘Car Tunnel’) in their latest production ‘Go n-Éirí an Bóthar’. Planned by Zenith and Source out of home, the campaign has been live this cycle across high impact, high dwell-time formats including Digitowers, Adshel, Bus Shelters, Dart CCs, Certa Screens, and Bus Supersides.


Mary Ward was the first person to be killed in a road accident, in 1869. Did you know she was from Ireland?

To launch their Vision Zero campaign – where the aim is to have no road deaths or serious injuries on Irish roads by 2050 – the RSA are running on Outdoor as Beárla agus Gaeilge to drive the message home across the entire country. Planned by PML and Spark Foundry, the creative from In the Company of Huskies is live across Metro Squares, Bus Shelters, and the Applegreen Pump Network targeting road vehicle users. 

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