Oct 2 2013
Basis Team

Connecting Place-Based Media to the Digital Landscape


Despite bearing a resemblance to television and a historical placement in the out-of-home category, digital place-based media (DPB) should also be recognized as an extension of digital advertising campaigns. Armed with the capability to run digital video messages, similar to desktop and mobile, DPB serves as a point of contextual reminder, engagement, and/or content delivery throughout the purchase cycle and is growing in sophistication as a cross-platform digital medium.

Consider how you spend your day: waking up and going for a quick workout at the gym, then off to work – but not before you get gas – then a lunch meeting in the middle of the day, and a run to the grocery store after work. There within your journey lies five touch points for marketers to reach you — gym, gas station, office, lunch, and grocery store. DPB is the digital thread for nearly 50% of U.S. adults (according to an Arbitron report) who consume media while in action mode. It is a distinctive opportunity for marketers to connect with the hard-to-reach, mind-changing, decision-maker.

Unlike out-of-home, DPB uses contextually relevant content to capture the consumer at moments of natural dwell time, such as an office elevator or taxi cab. The opportunity to reach consumers on-the-go and at the point-of-purchase takes it beyond just television. The ability to target audiences at specific times with dynamic video throughout their daily journey is inherently like desktop advertising. Combining audience data (where they live, work, and play) with inventory evaluation allows for smart selection against the desired target, similar to a mobile buy.

Location-based delivery to the IP addresses of digital screens allow pairing of ad messages with geo-targeting. Messages can be tailored to the time of day or the block. For example, an auto advertiser displays a message as a consumer researches a new car on the web and then sends a reminder of that message during a visit to the dealership. They can connect that to a story about the drivers of that type of vehicle in the middle of lunch or while en route to a meeting by extending that message to digital place-based media screens. The consumer can take more information with them using their mobile device to receive a special content video from the brand. Technologies like near-field communication (NFC) and QR codes extend the DPB experience, allowing a distracted consumer to take the information with them.

When we take a step back and consider the larger picture – how and when consumers are using multi-screens, as well as what kind of decisions they are making while in action mode – DPB fits in quite nicely as a strong vehicle to increase connections with a desired and elusive audience. It is a powerful tool with proven results against driving awareness and recall as a branding layer of advertising campaigns. A closer look at the flexibility of the medium gives a clear view of an opportunity for marketers to have their brand stand apart from the clutter and break through the noise. The consumer journey is a digital one, and so is DPB.