MAC Lights Up Programmatic OOH To Drive Footfall In Stores in Turkey

MAC Cosmetics wanted to increase footfall to its three most important storefronts in Turkey.

The makeup brand buys out-of-home (OOH) inventory on mall displays to drive awareness, but it wanted a less static and more measureable way to target shoppers and get them in store, said Tugba Cetegin, marketing manager at MAC Cosmetics in Turkey.

“For us, traffic is the key measurement,” she said.

When MAC’s agency, Mindshare, suggested trying programmatic OOH as a more dynamic and measurable solution to drive traffic, Cetegin was all-in.

“Traditional outdoor campaigns are nice for awareness, but you can’t track or measure them,” she said. “That’s why we chose programmatic.”

Mindshare introduced Tugba and her team to Alp Ayhan, founder and CEO of programmatic outdoor exchange Awarion (formerly Airsqreen). With a private marketplace through Dutch DSP Platform 161, Awarion hooks into digital displays in malls from out-of-home seller Core OOH. About 40 of those screens are outside of MAC’s three most important storefronts in Turkey.

Programmatic OOH is different than digital in that it isn’t yet transacted in a real-time auction; most buys occur on a guaranteed basis, at a fixed price per slot, due to a lack of sufficient demand. Still, automating the sales process allows for more dynamic and targeted campaigns that can be modified on the fly based on data, Ayhan said.

“We’re able to control day parting and frequency, as opposed to the fixed 180 frequency-per-day, minimum two-week buys [common in OOH],” he said.

Programmatic allowed MAC to target specific offers to shoppers at optimal times of day. By collecting data from in-store foot traffic sensors and business intelligence tool Shopper Track, MAC identified the slowest hours for each of its three storefronts and targeted shoppers with an offer for a free 15-minute express makeover during those times.

During peak hours, MAC ran a promotion for a Retro Matte Liquid Lip Color lipstick, its hero product for the campaign. Shoppers who saw the ad and went to the store got a buy-one-get-one-free offer for the product.

“We were able to look at [store data] and modify the campaign, just like you would do with a retargeting or a prospecting campaign on display,” Ayhan said.

To measure the effects of programmatic OOH, MAC compared the performance lift from its programmatic campaigns against static OOH campaigns running in other malls. The brand saw a 28% average weekly uplift in sales at stores running programmatic OOH ads, which was 15% higher than stores running non-programmatic campaigns.

“The question was, did the optimization on the OOH campaign cause the increase in the store performance, or would this have happened anyway?” Ayhan said. “When we did compare, our performance was higher than other stores.”

MAC is already thinking about the next programmatic OOH campaign it will run through Awarion in March. It wants to experiment with dynamic creative optimization to send specific calls to action and creatives to the shopper profiles of specific malls and stores, Cetegin said.

“This time we used our global creative assets,” she said. “Next time, the plan is to change the creative assets to have a door-based call to action.”

For MAC, a digitally savvy brand with a young consumer base, programmatic OOH will become a core part of its digital strategy, Cetegin added.

“MAC is very active in digital,” she said. “It's very nice to measure everything, every hour, to see the results and the traffic.”