Australian menswear brand YD has doubled its out-of-home (OOH) marketing investment this year, with billboards and street posters securing the majority of category spend. 

YD head of marketing Jeremy Taylor confirmed the brand launched its first OOH marketing campaign since 2019 this year, with the latest creative rolled out across 800 posters. 

Taylor told Ragtrader advertising has been extended across all capital cities in Australia, as well as the New South Wales Central Coast, compared to last year where it only targeted Melbourne and Sydney. 

"Digital is still our primary channel as it drives traffic direct to our website and allows us to create a full funnel strategy, however OOH has gained importance over the years when it comes to brand awareness supporting our digital channels," Taylor said.

"OOH has gained importance as it allows us to be more creative with the medium itself as seen in last year’s Get The Suit campaign with hanging physical suits off billboards and this year's ‘Wanted’ style posters for our ‘Suit Up’ campaign."

Taylor said interactivity has been a key pillar of YD’s OOH strategy. 

In September, YD paid live photographers to take photos of the public on a Friday night through AC/DC Lane and Melbourne Central. The images were showcased on a blank billboard in AC/DC Lane the following morning.

“OOH allows us to push our creative boundaries at YD to create campaigns that get people’s attention,” Taylor said. “It’s a great medium to think outside the box creatively to help with our brand awareness and complement our digital marketing campaigns.”

YD has a core marketing team of three to four professionals, with the implementation of its OOH campaigns running across other departments such as digital.

“We're all marketers who buy our favourite brands,” Taylor said. “So we know what stops us in our tracks. We try to have that approach when we're thinking of content for YD.

“Whether it's our April Fool's campaign or the current campaign, we don't really approach our content like a traditional fashion brand. Yes, we have our regular photoshoots, and we serve all of that content, but we always try to think of a more creative and scroll-stopping idea.”

Taylor said the brand pivots OOH spend throughout the year, with the exception of the Covid-19 pandemic period. 

“We have been pretty consistent with our spend, especially through spring racing, however this year we have doubled our spend to ensure we have an always-on approach - which we saw in August with our ‘Formals’ campaign and will see in summer after ‘Suit Up’ finishes.

“In today’s era, everyone is distracted by their phone and people are overwhelmed with advertising and content - OOH allows us to take on a more traditional approach to advertising; and when the creative is right, it really works.”

Taylor says that while OOH is traditionally more expensive than other mediums, there are ways of maximising the impact. This includes smart creative and setting goals for localised media buys depending on the campaign and the brand goals.

“Larger expenses aren’t so large when you start seeing success from a campaign,” he said.

“There’s no specific trick as such to bring down costs, however, the earlier you can get in when buying media the better - it ensures you get the most effective locations for your campaign.”

Key locations, according to Taylor, are spaces that have higher foot traffic but which are not necessarily in the vicinity of its stores.

“Everyone is so connected with a mobile phone, so the goal is that when someone sees a YD OOH ad, they jump on their phone and google the brand, and then become a part of our customer journey,” he said.

“We don't mind spending the money if we've got a clear expectation.”

YD operates 127 stores throughout Australia & New Zealand, including 26 Myer concessions.

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