A few of my favorite things – DOOH 2008

ShibuyaIt’s been a good year for DOOH. This year’s growth, aggregation and standardization guidelines have all strengthened opportunities across the industry for agencies and brands. Here are a few notable DOOH triumphs from 2008:

1. Summer Olympics: The breathtaking images of the opening ceremony and the “Water Cube” during the Beijing summer Olympics showed the high quality, and truly flexible capabilities of large scale LED to a global audience. The unrolling of the artistic canvas and stage that became focal point of the opening ceremony was 147 meters long and 22 meters wide, and embedded with 44,000 LED beads. In comparison, the Water Cube was reported to have used 440,000 LEDs to illuminate the 80,000 square meters of the aquatics center exterior. The grand scale of the graphics made for an impressive sight.

2.    Smart Carts: Previously available only in Europe, this year we saw the first smart cart deployment in the US. ShopRight supermarkets are providing digital screens mounted on grocery carts that allow customers with a ShopRite loyalty card to upload their shopping list directly to the screen. When a customer scans a product, the system checks the item off the list and provides a running total. Advertising offers can be served based on past shopping history and, because the carts are RFID enabled, the ads can be targeted depending on the customer’s location in the store.

3.    iGoogle Project Launch: A great combination of art and advertising, Google splashed beautiful digital scapes from contributing artists across 6 buildings over several days surrounding the launch party of iGoogle Artist Themes. It’s a great example of thinking outside (or on the box) and connecting with a community on a large scale.

4.    TruMedia: has been around since 2006, but I discovered it at this year’s Digital Signage Expo and have had several great conversations with the company this year. Plus, there has been quite a bit of press surrounding a New York Times article about their work. TruMedia can answer your brand’s question, “so how do I know if anyone actually saw our spot?” By attaching cameras to screens they can track the percent of traffic that actually looks directly at the screen using face recognition software which can identify the audience by age and gender. The length of time viewed and demographic information is recorded in real time and plotted along a content timeline. Brands can ascertain which content stimulated more interest.

5.   DOOH-Lead’s Dream Come True: As the Lab’s DOOH lead, my personal highlight of the year would have to be meeting Dale Herigstad, from Schematic at an ITA dinner at uWink Café in August. I felt like a bit of a groupie shaking hands with the interface designer who contributed to the technological innovations seen in Minority Report. Herigstad’s inspiring presentation focused on his current work for the Summer Olympics and interactive TV. Hanging out with Nolan Bushnell (pictured above) , founder and CEO of Atari, Chuck E. Cheese, and uWink was also exciting. When you’re making plans to visit the Lab, make sure you include a dinner at uWink, to see how technology and branded content can be entertaining and facilitate social interaction.

I’d love to hear from you on your favorite DOOH technology launches or campaign executions from this year.