Out of home advertising revenue in the US increased by 7.7% year-on-year in the second quarter of 2019, representing its highest rate of quarterly growth since 2007, the latest trade figures have revealed.

According to the Out of Home Advertising Association of America (OAAA), the sector generated $2.69bn in Q2 2019, while revenue also rose 7% in the first half of the year compared to the same period in 2018.

Digital OOH posted the highest increases across all formats, the trade body said, accounting for almost a third (31%) of total OOH revenue in the second quarter.

But there was also “strong” quarterly growth in revenues for billboards, street furniture, transit and place-based media, said Nancy Fletcher, OAAA president and CEO.

Almost 70% of the top OOH advertisers increased their spending in the second quarter compared to the same period last year, while a quarter more than doubled their media investment.

The top ten advertisers over the period were McDonald’s, Geico, Apple, State Farm, Chevrolet, Amazon, Facebook, Anheuser-Busch, AT&T and HBO, while tech firms accounted for more than a quarter of the top 100 OOH advertisers.

According to the OAAA, six out of the top ten revenue categories outperformed national GDP growth in the second quarter and these were retail, media and advertising, public transport, hotels and resorts, insurance and real estate, and automotive dealers and services.

Commenting on the findings, Stephen Freitas, OAAA’s chief marketing officer, said: “OOH’s ability to deliver mass reach and maintain audience is a significant competitive strength.

“Nielsen found 66% of US travellers report taking an action on their smartphone after exposure to an OOH ad. By generating engagement in the real world, OOH’s value to brands is stronger than ever.”

WARC's current projections expect the US OOH market to top $8bn for the first time next year, bouyed by rising spend on digital panels. Indeed, close to a quarter of all billboards in the US will be digital by 2020.

Today, 60% of Americans see a digital billboard each month, and 37% do so each week. The format plays a core role in the daily commute, according to WARC's Global Ad Trends report on the topic, and has been shown to drive online activations, demonstrating a synergy with consumers’ mobile habits.

Sourced from OAAA; additional content by WARC staff