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Providing a catalyst for conversation

The energy of a city is shaped by its public spaces and how people traverse within these spaces, interacting with each other as much as with the built and natural environment.

The canvas of a city offers creative opportunities everywhere, and this year we encouraged people to look up, look around, and embrace the potential of Out of Home (OOH).


With OOH advertising reaching more people each day – a whopping 12.6 million, making 52 million trips across the five capital city markets, seeing up to 30 advertising faces – our role as an industry body that oversees the self-regulatory framework becomes more important. The industry's sustainability is intrinsically linked to the respect we show to the communities and the environments in which we operate. We are in the midst of great change, and the role we play is key in responding to our audience's needs, be it our members, advertisers, government or the public.


New South Wales is leading the way with updates to the planning legislation for signage – the SEPP 64 – and associated guidelines that will now simplify the process of seeking approval for a sign development. It also means that there is now one safe, and consistent standard for the operation of digital signs in the State. While digital OOH increases the relevance of brand messages, all OOH formats, from roadside and street furniture, to transport and retail, still offer high impact and visibility, and printed posters still comprise a large proportion of OMA member inventory. What's more, in the coming years, the Internet of Things and Augmented Reality will start to bring our printed posters to life.


The issue of content restrictions has been one of the most pressing matters in 2017. The OMA has proactively engaged industry bodies; promoting its strong track record in upholding the 17 self-regulatory codes it manages. We work closely with our colleagues at Ad Standards, the Australian Association of National Advertisers, The Communications Council, and the ABAC Responsible Alcohol Marketing Scheme to ensure that the industry's system of self-regulation delivers high standards of compliance across all relevant industry codes of practice.


As an 'at a glance medium', the OOH industry has had to be innovative to remain relevant, and this is more palpable in the current rapidly changing media environment. There are 81,980 measurable OOH advertising faces across Australia, and, as urban growth accelerates, OOH advertising is perfectly positioned to reach people on every park of their journey, where they live, work, shop and socialise. Our members have invested millions of dollars to deliver new ways to connect people and cities by providing a digital network that offers information, WiFi, and way-finding, among other services.

As we look toward our 80th anniversary in 2019, we are humbled by how far we have come. Technology and innovation are allowing us to be more sustainable with energy neutral signs, solar-powered technology, recycling of posters and materials, as well as a reduction in the use of PVC materials. I am proud to see the industry embracing its role as a leader in progressing sustainability and we will continue on this path.

Thanks you the OMA and MOVE Boards, led by Chairman Steve O'Connor, and the committees who endorse our work with a vigour that ensures our success.

OOH is part of the public discourse. It exposes us to a world outside our curated bubble and invites us to consider other perspectives. Playing an integral role in sustaining a thriving economy, OOH broadcasts to millions of people each day and headlines messages that are part of what makes a city diverse, as well as being a catalyst for conversation.

We look forward to continuing that conversation with you into the future.

Charmaine Moldrich