Interactive outdoor advertising employs mobile phone

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July 10, 2006 With more than 2.5 billion mobile phones in use and saturation reached in most industrialised countries, there are myriad opportunities opening up for additional usage of existing mobile phone functionality, including the ability for advertising sites such as bus shelters, and poster panels interact directly with customers in their vicinity. One such technology platform is the UK-based Hypertag which works by allowing infra-red or Bluetooth mobile phones and PDAs (such as Palm Pilots or Pocket Pcs) to interact with a small electronic tag embedded in the billboard. When the consumer holds their mobile phone up to the Hypertag, they can download assets related to the promotional opportunity such as ringtones, audio and video clips, wallpapers, Java games, vouchers, tickets, instant win prizes, games, animations and … the possibilities are endless. One area that holds enormous promise is that of events and attractions, where for example, a museum could use the technology to offer additional text, audio or video information about each exhibit. Our favourite application so far was hatched in Australia when United International Pictures (UIP) and media agency Mediaedge:cia, partnered with AURA Interactive, The Global Game, and Adshel to launch an original new interactive game inspired by the highly anticipated film, Mission Impossible III. All players who registered on a dedicated website were required to race about their capital city, searching around various city locations for hidden answers to a series of Mission: Impossible themed clues. The clues were delivered using a combination of SMS messaging and Hypertag technology embedded into Adshel bus shelters and street signage, positioned at various sites across each capital city. Consumers accessing the Hypertags could download ringtones, wallpapers or a business card providing a phone number to SMS for the clue.

"We've raised the bar on interactive gaming," said Jon Anderson, National Marketing Manager for United International Pictures. "This has been a tremendously innovative and exciting project which incorporated on-line, mobile and Hypertag technology, as well as good old-fashioned problem solving to make this race a thrilling real-time experience."

Alison Vandyke, of UIP said, of the scheme, "the usage report on interactions shows which locations had the most interactions and how many other features consumers chose to download. It's valuable information for advertisers because we are always looking to improve the return on investment."

Adam Dunne, of Australian Hypertag sales partner AURA, said, "Hypertag technology allows advertisers to engage and interact with consumers in exciting new ways. Of the total interactions, there were over 8,300 unique individuals making this the largest Hypertag campaign to date in Australia. More than 50 per cent of the people who downloaded the clue also wanted the M:i:III branded mobile content. We were also able to record the top 20 handsets used and identify a hierarchy of the best performing sites."

"Following on from the success of all our interactive outdoor advertising campaigns over the past 18 months in Australia, we are now just finalising the launch of the Hypertag solution with Adshel in New Zealand with the support of our local sales partner, coincidently named, The Hyperfactory." said Dunne

Anthony Xydis, Adshel Marketing Director comments, "This campaign was a great example of how Adshel worked with a number of media channels to create a greater level of involvement and engagement with consumers, particularly in the out of home environment. We are looking forward to working with Hyperfactory and AURA to launch our first ever Hypertag campaign across our extensive street furniture network in New Zealand in August."

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