UK Companies Collaborate On Trial Of DOOH Screen Energy And Emissions Reporting
August 17, 2023 by Dave Haynes
A UK technology provider focused on the digital out-of-home industry has developed what’s touted as a first of its kind reporting tool to look at the environmental implications of public-facing ad screens, down to the ad campaign level.
London-based UniLED collaborated with OPEN Media, Electric Glue and Starling Bank to trial its Screen Energy and Emissions Report with an agency and brand.
The DOOH Screen Energy and Emissions Reporting functionality is being developed in the UniLIVE platform by UniLED, in response to an urgent need by the media industry to accurately measure and reduce its environmental impact. Its aim is to provide a singular, agreed methodology to capture a more efficient and accurate picture of the energy usage of a DOOH campaign. This will assist vendors in identifying the most significant drivers of screen energy consumption and help make more targeted reductions.
To make this effective industry-wide, UniLED has issued a ‘call to action’ for more media owners and vendors to agree to share energy consumption data.
DOOH screens are one of the largest, most visible, and most trusted media formats on the market with a long legacy of innovation, funding, and action to improve their environmental impact. However, as a result of inaccurate media energy emissions reporting, or media carbon calculators relying on estimations and incomparable methodologies that can provide a distorted picture, they are often victims of inaccurate assumptions about their energy consumption.
UniLED’s heritage in DOOH screen technology and award-winning third-party verification platform UniLIVE put it in a unique position to increase transparency and help reduce the complexity and fragmentation of energy emission reporting. It has existing connections to, and trusted relationships with the majority of buyers and 100% of UK media owners – granting it access, and permission to use their play, time and audience data for DOOH campaign reporting.
The company says the effort reflects how brands, media owners and agencies are steadily looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprint and align with green initiatives, whether mandated or voluntary.
What brands, media agencies and owners really need urgent help with, argues UniLed, is to be able to measure and report more accurately by having access to factually correct information. This will help them identify and focus on the priority actions to significantly reduce their media energy emissions.
“The industry is working in silos to address this problem and making progress in isolation but what we all need to address climate change is collaboration and transformative action now,” says UniLed’s Abigail Cunningham. “With our heritage in screen technology and the DOOH independent verification space, we knew we had a unique opportunity to play our part in driving the change. We applaud OPEN Media, Electric Glue and Starling Bank for stepping up to the mark and supporting us with the development of our Energy Reporting Platform. However, we would like to issue a call to action for more vendors to collaborate with us – by agreeing to supply the data they have available (confidentially and safely) and contributing to the development and industry approval of a consistent methodology, we can work together to raise the bar for more accurate energy emission reporting! It’s a win, win for everyone!”
The company says it is inviting agency partners, media owners and industry stakeholders to provide feedback on the first trial methodology, and hoping to get broader agreement on consistent metrics and outputs.
The next stage in the development of the Energy Reporting Platform is to ingest more of the available data and test campaign variables. This will help UniLED to produce learnings and guidelines with the aim of helping the DOOH industry make significant reductions in the emissions from ‘In Use’ DOOH screens, without reducing campaign quality and performance for advertisers.
Energy consumption and green signage issues are very much mainstreamed discussions across the Atlantic, particularly in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. But it is a discussion that will increasingly find its way to North America. Heat waves, storms, wildfires and an endless torrent of weather-driven disasters are making it increasingly hard for climate change deniers to continue being dismissive. If nothing else, DOOH operators should be looking at energy management just to reduce bills by doing no-brainers like dynamically adjusting light output based on ambient light (crank it down at night).