Firefly adds mobile device-like targeting in order to ads on car rooftops

A San Francisco-based startup is launching a brand new platform  on Thursday that marries the contextual targeting of cellular to digital-out-of-home (DOOH) signs.

‘ Situationally aware’ outdoor mobile signs. Firefly has set up digital signs atop hundreds of cabs and other rent-on-demand vehicles like Lyft or Uber during its months-long beta phase in Los Angeles plus San Francisco. The rooftop signs obtain ads via 4G and 4-G LTE cellular transmission that are exactly what founder and CEO Kaan Gunay called “ situationally aware, ” with targeting based on location, period, intended demographic, weather or various other contextual data.

Could sort of targeting has become commonplace just for ads on smartphones or capsules, it’ s now just rising in digital signs. Gunay mentioned his firm is the first to put geo-targeted displays in large numbers upon car services, with a granularity that can drop a city block.

Use cases, driver income. As an example use situation, he pointed to Brex, the startup-focused credit card that shows advertisements when the vehicles are near communities housing a lot of new companies. Or even an ad for Sam’ h Club can show when the cars are usually near that retailer, as proven in the image above.

Firefly limits the ad denseness to no more than eight different kinds of advertisements on all the vehicles in a provided location, such as a city block, every ad — either static or even video — is shown with regard to no more than eight seconds.

Rates are CPM-based, and a percent of the revenue goes to the driver generally, Firefly said. Gunay said the normal driver can make an average of $300 a month from the ads.

Community tie-ins. Along with helping drivers, Firefly touts the other community services. Ten percent from the ad inventory is reserved regarding pro bono ad placements by not-for-profit or even governmental services, and another 10 % is held for local companies, sometimes at special rates. Atmosphere sensors accompany the signs, giving air quality data that Firefly openly provides to the Clean Air Coalition.

Gunay said there are simply no stats yet on whether this sort of targeted, mobile DOOH advertising works more effectively than other kinds of outdoor advertising. A rollout to New York can be planned for early next year, accompanied by other US cities.

Why you should care. As outdoor digital signs substitute static ones, the DOOH system is rapidly becoming an integrated area of the digital ad ecosystem. For many requirement side platforms, DOOH has become yet another channel.

With this kind of rollouts as Firefly’ s, cellular DOOH signage is now becoming yet another form of mobile advertising — other than that it sits on a rooftop, instead of in a person’ s hand or even on a wrist.

This story first appeared on MarTech Today. For more on marketing technologies, click here.


About The Writer

Barry Levine covers advertising technology for Third Door Press. Previously, he covered this area as a Senior Writer for VentureBeat, and he has written about these as well as other tech subjects for such guides as CMSWire and NewsFactor. He or she founded and led the web site/unit at PBS station Thirteen/WNET; worked well as an online Senior Producer/writer pertaining to Viacom; created a successful interactive sport, PLAY IT BY EAR: The very first CD Game; founded and brought an independent film showcase, CENTER DISPLAY, based at Harvard and Meters. I. T.; and served more than five years as a consultant towards the M. I. T. Media Laboratory. You can find him at LinkedIn, and Twitter at xBarryLevine.

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