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The future of high-tech targeting

Earlier last week digital signage software provider Immersive Labs introduced its latest billboard technology at TechStars’ Demo Day in New York....

Earlier last week digital signage software provider Immersive Labs introduced its latest billboard technology at TechStars’ Demo Day in New York. Its new software combines video analytics with environmental factors, Twitter and Foursquare information to decide on the best ad to display at a particular moment. Reminiscent of the moment Tom Cruise enters a GAP store in the futuristic film ‘Minority Report’, Immersive Lab’s latest offering demonstrates targeted billboard advertising is no longer just the stuff of sci-fi movies. Indeed, Immersive Lab is not the first technical whiz kid to use this kind of sophisticated technology. Other organisations have been dabbling behind the location-based marketing scenes for a while. The point is, this kind of intelligent mobile marketing is steadily on the rise and it won’t be too long before we’re all absorbing highly targeted ad messaging on a day-to-day basis.

So what does this mean for marketers? It’s all part of how global brands are responding to the need to be more social, mobile and local. This sentiment was recently captured by Google’s director of external relations EMEA and former BBC Newsnight editor, Peter Barron. Speaking at a digital marketing briefing, hosted by digital consultancy, The Reading Room, Barron was quick to show off Google’s +1 functionality, Google Insight and Google Goggle – and how these kinds of tools can help connect brands with a customer base that’s on the move - both physically and in terms of the shift in their buyer behaviour. The proliferation of smartphones and tablet devices, as well as the rise of the proactive (not just reactive) customer, means brands need to think more carefully about how to stay connected and engaged with their audience. 

As those experienced in DM and email will testify, a one-size-fits-all approach to marketing is no longer good enough. In our action-packed world, the savvy customer demands localised and personalised messaging from brands, and why shouldn’t they? After all, everyone likes to feel as important at the Ray Ban-spectacled Mr Cruise.