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Advertising Weekly: Companies Use Technology To Sp

Advertising Weekly: Companies Use Technology To Spruce Up Outdoor Ads

September 28, 2005

As NY1 continues our week-long look at the advertising industry, we look now at the future of ads. NY1 Tech Beat Reporter Adam Balkin found some of the newest, eye-catching ways advertisers are hoping to draw you in, and he filed this report.

It's a room full of stuff designed to grab your attention. New high-tech ways for advertisers to get you to want to look at their message - that was the theme of Outdoor Advertising Association of America's second annual Innovations in Outdoor Showcase.

“There's a lot of media today, and consumers are hit with many, many different advertising messages throughout the day,” says Stephen Freitas of the Outdoor Advertising Association of America. “What a lot of these products do is cut through the clutter. They're products that make the products that are being advertised more attractive and appealing to consumers as they're traveling through the course of their day.”

Take, for example, the freefone. It grants you free local calls while you stand there, they hope, and stare at the commercial right in front of your face.

“Eveybody thinks public telephones are going away. They're not going away at all. There will always be a need for them, always be a use for them, and we've developed a public telephone that incorporates a 15-inch flat-screen monitor that allows us to play advertising and charge nothing for calls,” says Peter Volney of freefone.

Night Vision 3D by Next and Magnetic Media allow advertising messages to literally jump right out at you, though you have to see it in person to understand the effect, because the physics of the system break down when shot for television.

“Advertising in general started with 2D images, flat images going to digital images,” says Sue Kobin of Next Media. “This is digital, plus this is 3D digital. People will see it in the nightclubs, images will fly out at them, [and] that's a ‘wow’ factor. It’s akin to those great movies you saw with the 3D glasses, only you don't need glasses.”

The SUBMEDIA billboard also puts a new twist on a decades old concept.

“It’s based on a child's toy called the zoitrobe that's about 170-years-old,” says Peter Corrigan of SUBMEDIA. “What happened is two inventors looked at the zoitrobe - and it's a little cylinder thing and you spin it and you look through the slits and there are still images, but when you spin it you see motion graphics – well, they looked at that zoitrobe and said, ‘Hey, wouldn't it be great if we made it straight?’'

One technology called Reactrix, even if you've seen it before, no doubt it pops out at you every time.

“It uses a combination of motion-sensing technology and animation,“ says Bart Wolman of Reactrix. “The motion sensor captures your movement as you walk over or gesture over the media, and then the animation makes the media respond to you in real time. What it does is makes you a part of the experience.”

High-tech advertising - the choice of a new generation.

- Adam Balkin

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