Thursday, December 22, 2011

Mohawk College Uses Digital Signage to Improve Campus Communications

As part of a multi-million dollar project to renew campus facilities at Mohawk College Student Centre in Hamilton, Ontario, the Student Association has deployed a student centre-wide digital signage network using Scala software to update students on news and services, and also provide instant emergency alerts should the need arise.

The key reasons why Mohawk Students' Association chose Scala's content management software was it enabled them to create a digital signage network that delivered:

  • Relevant up-to-date content;
  • Interactive and dynamic messages which leverage social media such as Twitter feeds;
  • Ability to make display changes at a moment's notice;
  • Content which can be scheduled in advance; and
  • Multiple channels to deliver unique messages to specific audiences.

  • Scala Certified Partner, Gorrie Marketing Services (GMS), delivered the turn-key solution that included Scala 5 and Designer software, Samsung LCD displays, network installation, content design consultation and operational training on Scala for managing the network and its content.

    "The combination of GMS and Scala software has helped us create a digital signage network to communicate and wow students," said Steve Kosh, Marketing & Communications Manager, Mohawk Students' Association. "Our new system makes the messages standout and be fun so they stick with busy students, covering campus activities, social events like upcoming concerts and movie nights, community news and administrative facts."

    The project included 12 independent channels of content and 26 LCD displays ranging in size from 32" to 60". The network uses an independent infrastructure to deliver video, audio and device control signals to run the screens found throughout the school's high traffic areas like the main entrance, reception area and key hallways. The digital network also engages students at essential on-campus services such as the coffee shop, two quick service restaurants and a variety store. The most impressive display can be found at The Arnie – part restaurant, part pub, part entertainment venue. As students enter The Arnie, they are greeted by a giant video wall consisting of nine 46" displays. Once inside, there are an additional four 46" screens pumping-out the latest scoop via the dedicated Arnie media channel.

    "With the amount of information bombarding students on a daily basis, it can be very difficult for colleges and universities to engage with students and deliver effective messages," said Andy McRae, General Manager, Scala Canada. "The Mohawk Students' Association has been very creative in how they use digital signage with multiple channels and locations – and incorporating social media. Their approach delivers communications in a way that really grabs people's attention."

    Tuesday, December 13, 2011

    VIDEO: The Media Merchants Lamborghini Projection Mapping

    The Media Merchants created "The Lamborghini Project", a projection mapping featuring 3D animations and real time effects on a Lamborghini Reventon. Here's the video:

    The Lamborghini Project from The Media Merchants on Vimeo.

    Mark's Work with ADFLOW for Digital Signage

    Mark’s, a clothing and footwear retailer wholly owned subsidiary of Canadian Tire, has selected ADFLOW Networks as their digital signage provider for all store redesign initiatives. Mark’s is incorporating multiple in-store digital displays - both passive and interactive - into the DNA of their new store design. The new shopping environment features captivating, dynamic digital media throughout strategic areas of the store.

    Mediavation, Mark’s long standing agency partner, is the driving force behind this initiative and the key creator of the in-store digital media strategy and content creation. They recommended ADFLOW Networks to help them achieve their vision for Mark’s.

    Joseph Levy, President of Mediavation, stated that “After much due diligence, Marks and Mediavation decided to partner with ADFLOW Networks to provide a unique in-store digital signage solution, mainly because of ADFLOW’s years of experience and proven expertise.”

    Tom Ranieri, AVP Store Design at Mark’s added, “We felt that ADFLOW had a powerful and flexible system that allowed us to seamlessly integrate our multi-platform in-store digital signage strategy.”

    Mark’s innovative strategy is comprised of Four (Plus One) points of focus: brand enhancement, in-store customer experience, customer education, and driving sales. The (Plus One) point of focus is on driving traffic to the website, community outreach, and staff training via the interactive displays.

    Mark’s new in-store digital media network consists of large-format screens mounted in prominent locations throughout the store to create a targeted ambience. The new stores also offer touch-enabled, interactive LCD displays called Touch Point that both educate and entertain Mark’s customers, while informing them about the benefits of Mark’s products innovation and design. The final digital media element, located behind the point-of-sale counter, is a stunning LCD Video Wall that displays high—resolution brand enhancement content spanning all four displays, making it easily visible from anywhere in the store.

    “We are delighted to be Mark’s in-store digital media partner and a key contributor for this important initiative” says Mike Abbott, President of ADFLOW Networks.  “Retailers today are looking for new and more effective ways to promote their brand, educate and entertain customers and drive sales.  With their new in-store concept, Mark’s, together with Mediavation, are leading the way by creating a unique and engaging shopping experience.”

    Thursday, December 8, 2011

    Rumour Mill: CBS Outdoor switching to Omnivex

    Word on the street is that CBS Outdoor in North America is switching their digital signage CMS platform to Omnivex Moxie.

    This is most likely the case. If you can trust CBS Outdoor Network Systems Engineer LinkedIn pages, they are "implement[ing] Omnivex content management and scheduling system for 250 outdoor advertising displays using EVDO over CDMA wireless technology. This design is being implemented across the company."

    Tuesday, December 6, 2011

    Gallery: Largest ever MicroTiles display

    Christie in the EMEA has release a case study on their spectacular MicroTiles installation at the London Stock Exchange (LSE) in the city's Square Mile area.

    The installation features 508 MicroTiles the LSE's Atrium in Paternoster Square and replaces a moving sculpture called "The Source". Installation services were provided by Christie partner Focus 21 Visual Communications Ltd.

    Visitors entering the London Stock Exchange are greeted by two portable columns of Christie MicroTiles (they have their own power supply) in a 1 x 5 configuration. Further into the Atrium, there two strips of MicroTiles, each consisting of 29 and 31 MicroTiles respectively, and an impressive video wall that uses 132 MicroTiles in an 11 x 12 array. The video wall, in unison with the other MicroTiles arrays, stream a variety of content throughout the day including live news and market data from CNBC.

    Another MicroTiles video wall (in 8 x 6 array) has been installed on the balcony overlooking the atrium and can mimic the content on the main video wall. On the ground level there is a mosaic of 46 MicroTiles of different depths and heights, while outside the Atrium, visitors are kept updated with another set of four columns of MicroTiles (in a 2 x 4 array).

    Christie has a great video case study on their site. Here's some pictures of the installation to whet your appetite.

    Monday, December 5, 2011

    Canada's DIGI Awards

    Canada's Digi Awards are taking place on December 6th (yes, tomorrow) at The Carlu in Toronto. Juries from across Canada will be deciding who are the digital elite based on "the list" compiled by nextMEDIA.

    Awards categories include Canada's Top Digital Companies (Presented by Deloitte), Canada's Most Promising New Digital Company, and Digital Executive of the Year. The complete list can be found here.

    While most of the awards revolved around web or mobile technologies, ScreenScape Networks Inc. and its "community-based digital signage network" could get the nod for Most Innovative Digital Media Technology.

    Good luck to all the finalists.

    Thursday, December 1, 2011

    ADFLOW signs biometric screening kiosk deal with Rite Aid

    ADFLOW Health Networks, the industry leader in patented technology for digital messaging focused on Consumer Health Engagement and Marketing, announced today it will be placing biometric screening kiosks—Personal Health Centers™—in all Rite Aid locations.

    The agreement with ADFLOW demonstrates Rite Aid's commitment to transforming customer wellness through personal health management.

    "We are excited about our collaboration with Rite Aid for numerous reasons," commented Mel Stein, CEO of ADFLOW Health Networks. "Rite Aid customers enjoy this new technology and will benefit from the additional health screenings. Additionally, marketers will be able to engage with shoppers in what has now become the largest network of interactive digital biometric kiosks with leading national retail pharmacy chains across all classes of trade, worksites, and health systems in North America," Mr. Stein added, "With an estimated 71,000,000 consumers using analog blood pressure machines located in retail pharmacies at least once in the last 12 months, the potential to engage with those consumers in a meaningful way is immense and now upon us."

    Wednesday, November 30, 2011

    COMB releases new COMBNavigator for better media planning

    The Canadian Out-of-Home Measurement Bureau, or COMB, just released COMBNavigator® 2012, a new software version used by outdoor advertising planners, buyers and sellers for campaign planning and reach-frequency analysis.

    "“Over two years in development, the new COMBNavigator® tool is a quantum leap forward"”, says Karen Best, President of the Canadian Out-of-Home Measurement Bureau (COMB). “"Agency and outdoor-media-company users will save time, increase their productivity and add a new level of precision to reach-frequency analysis."

    The planning tool offers outdoor advertising options in nineteen Canadian markets from leading OOH media companies Astral Out-of-Home, CBS Outdoor and Pattison Outdoor.

    Extensive consumer profile data from BBM Analytics’ RTS has been integrated so campaign planners can confidently determine reach, frequency and impressions-delivery for hundreds of custom target groups – from women 25-54 who shop online department stores to men 18-34 who regularly participate in adventure sports. 

    The reach-frequency model was developed by Richard Jean of RJA, a long-time Canadian media modelling expert. Noteworthy is the first-time inclusion of real-world travel pattern data which adjusts the mathematical probability model (the typical means of building reach-frequency curves) to reflect how Canadians travel within their cities and are exposed to outdoor advertising.

    Using GPS technology, COMB studied Canadians'’ driving patterns over a seven year period in five Canadian markets. In total, over 265,000 kilometres were tracked, generating 980,000 exposures to COMB outdoor advertising. "“The hybrid design which incorporates both statistical probability and empirical GPS data, is a first to be offered to the marketplace"”, states Jean “"and that offers a new level of reliability to OOH media planners”".

    Jeremy Stick, Project Director for COMBNavigator® asserts that "“the software functionality is efficient, intuitive and will surprise planners with its flexibility and speed.” “At-a-glance views of the COMB Data Report, now integrated into the tool for the first time, put more outdoor quantitative data in planners’ hands all in one easily-accessible tool."

    January will see the addition of a flighting module and reach-frequency results in visual graph form. These and future data and software enhancements will be automatic upon launching the application from planners’ desktops.

    Tuesday, November 29, 2011

    i-design secures first contract in Canada

    Dundee, Scotland-based firm i-design, a provider of customer engagement software and interface design solutions for the self-service channel, has announced that they have signed a multi-year agreement with a large Canadian bank for its targeted marketing software joono to be integrated in their ATM's.

    This latest deal was secured via i-design's channel partner in Canada, IBM Canada Limited, and is the Scottish firm's first win via IBM.

    "This contract expands our presence in North America significantly, taking i-design's software into Canada for the first time. We are also delighted that this is the first contract win secured via our channel partner, IBM Canada Limited, and look forward to working together on future opportunities," said Ana Stewart, CEO of i-design.

    "We believe that joono represents an unrivalled digital marketing proposition for banks and we continue to see exciting opportunities both in the UK and internationally for our software."

    joono replaces i-design’s market leading solution, atmAd, and has been designed to offer customers greater functionality and range. The solution enables banks to communicate with their customers through a larger number of channels, including mobile phones and LCD screens, in addition to ATMs and self-service machines.

    Shares in i-design rose 4% after the Scottish cash machine technology specialist announced it had won its first contract in Canada.

    Friday, November 25, 2011

    Penningtons mirrors surprise shoppers with firemen

    Penningtons Plus, a Canadian women's plus-size apparel retailer, ran an interesting campaign, called Styled to Surprise, where they recorded shoppers' reactions to a magic mirror they installed in one of their stores.

    In order to fulfill their mission to "give plus size fashion a makeover", Penningtons surprised shoppers trying on clothes at a large mirror by virtually displaying a pair of firemen that slide down pools and proceed to court the very fashionable buyer.

    Very original.

    Stream the video below.

    (via @sixteennine)

    Clear Channel Expands Toronto Airport Digital Network

    Clear Channel Outdoor Canada has launched the Digital Advertising and Wayfinding Network at Toronto Pearson Airport. What started as a single wayfinding and advertising module in Terminal 1 back in February, has expanded to 18 units in Terminals 1 and 3.

    The spectacular display they piloted in February features an advertising module that incorporates two 103” vertically-oriented 1080P HD plasma displays and a retail promotional wayfinding module with two interactive touch screen displays.

    The units will guide Toronto Pearson’s guests to departure gates, airport amenities, and dining and shopping offerings.

    The Greater Toronto Airport Authority worked closely with network manager Clear Channel Canada to bring the new advertising units to Pearson. Additional consulting was provided by Arium Design, Gridcast Digital, and Jibestream Interactive.

    Wayfinding is powered by Jibestream’s ‘NovoMap’ platform which incorporates a 3D engine that allows users to shift the map while maintaining a clear perspective of their current position.

    Thursday, November 24, 2011

    RFP Alert: Digital Signage and Emergency Messaging at McMaster University

    A Canadian public tender was published November 8th for a digital signage and emergency messaging system at McMaster University. The chosen supplier will need to design and install the emergency system and maintain the digital signage on an ongoing basis.

    Although emergency messaging is the focus, a general digital signage communication platform needs to be implemented given the infrequent nature of alerts.

    McMaster University is located in Hamilton, Ontario, and is one of only four Canadian universities to be listed in the World’s Top 100 universities. The University has a student population of close to 25,000.

    The RFP closing date is December 20th, 2011 at 1:00pm EDT. To obtain the details of the RFP, visit MERX.

    Wednesday, November 23, 2011

    iSIGN switching to BroadSign for Couche-Tard digital signage

    iSIGN Media Solutions Inc. has signed an agreement with BroadSign International, Montreal-based developer of SaaS digital signage, to manage networked digital displays in Couche-Tard's convenience stores.

    iSIGN, through its subsidiary Pinpoint Media Group, operates the network of advertising and promotional screens within the Couche-Tard chain of approximately 1,400 convenience stores in Canada. This network is the largest owner/operator network of in-store digital media in Canada. Once the installation of our Interactive Massaging Solutions ("IMS") software is completed, this network will be the world's largest fully interactive digital signage network.

    Each convenience store has 2 to 3 screens installed at the point of sale, running brand loyalty programs, public service announcements and in-store promotions. BroadSign's digital signage software allows iSIGN to schedule and playback content on each screen, manage updates and monitor network health - doing all this from one central location, with minimal staff.

    "Our engineering and technical staff worked for weeks to qualify and confirm BroadSign as the management system for all of our future network and Interactive Massaging Solutions ("IMS") applications scheduled for installation," states Alex Romanov, iSIGN's Chief Executive Officer.

    "BroadSign's software has proven its ability to run some of the world's most sizable, complex and commercially successful digital signage networks," added Mr. Romanov. "This software-as-a-service platform is second to none in the industry and is an indispensable tool for us as a digital signage network operator."

    The deployment of BroadSign's software is scheduled to be completed in early 2012.

    "Less than twelve months ago we started a pure technology integration partnership with iSIGN that enhanced our digital signage platform with a mobile advertising solution. Today, following their acquisition of Pinpoint Media and the Couche-Tard network operation, we have expanded our relationship, and iSIGN has become our biggest Canadian client networks," said Brian Dusho, CEO of BroadSign International.

    Edmonton City Centre Powers Digital Video Walls with Audience Software

    The Edmonton City Centre shopping mall located in downtown Edmonton, Alberta is using Audience software to power a network of recently installed digital signage displays.

    The goal of the installation is to engage the more the 4.5 million annual visitors that use the bridgeway connecting the east and west halves of the mall by introducing a network of large scale, digital video walls displaying news, entertainment and promotional info. The largest of the three displays consists of sixteen, 42 inch ultrathin monitors displaying a wide range of video, animation and automated content.

    The first step for Edmonton City Centre was to find the perfect partner and software solution for the custom application. After screening multiple companies, WMC Digital Media Inc. was picked to manage the project in partnership with local Authorized Audience Reseller, Matrix Video Communications Corp (MVCC) and Capital Networks Limited.

    MVCC was responsible for the installation of wiring, screens and mounts, and supplied the Audience software responsible for the creation and management of content for the digital signage displays, while Capital Networks provided initial production services including custom screen designs.

    WMC Digital Media owns and operates the digital signage network within Edmonton City Centre space, managing a variety of sourced and original content including automated news updates in partnership with CTV News, Edmonton City Centre branding and promotion, Trivial Pursuit trivia in partnership with Hasbro, Inc., and various outside advertising opportunities.

    “Our technology accommodates static images, animation, video and audio. The result is an enhanced experience for the shopper and downtown commuter,” says Walsh McPherson, Founder/President of WMC Digital Media Inc. “We draw from over 6,000,000 square feet in prime downtown office space, along with over 800,000 in retail. It’s imperative that we capture the attention of the 4,500,000 individuals that use our bridgeway annually.”

    While providing a more modernized method for sharing information and promotions with patrons, the move from static print displays to digital signage also allows updates to be more timely and efficient, with content streamed to each display from one central location using the Audience software platform.

    “Our mandate is to engage, inform and entertain all those who work, shop and play in downtown Edmonton. We have achieved this with state of the art software, hardware, and network platforms that enable us to provide virtually up to the second information through RSS feeds on news, weather, Hollywood reports and sports.”

    The high impact digital signage also provides the opportunity to drive revenue by selling ad space to outside advertisers.

    “We have an incredibly high standard for our advertising messaging, and its production. WMC looks to maximize return on investment for its advertisers by producing high impact, video and audio that people not only notice, but enjoy and recall.”

    Friday, November 18, 2011

    Newad acquires Media One’s assets and appoints Lino Ricco Vice President and Regional General Manager – Central Canada

    Newad’s President and CEO Michael Reha announced the acquisition of Media One’s assets and the appointment of its President, Lino Ricco, to the position of Vice President and Regional General Manager – Central Canada. Lino Ricco will be responsible for commercial activities and sales with ad agencies in Toronto. This marks Ricco’s return to Newad after a departure motivated by the desire to launch his own business in 1997.

    “I’m very happy to welcome Lino into the team. His managerial talent, his vision and his expertise are great assets, which all of Newad’s departments will benefit from, notably Indoor Advertising, Experiential Marketing and Newad OnLine. The return of Lino to our team, in a strategic position with great potential for development, is excellent news for our entire team as well as our national clients,” underlines Reha.

    “Since my departure back in 1997, Newad has achieved prodigious gains by consolidating its assets and varying its line of products and services. The team I join today is one that continues to prove itself day in, day out, in Toronto and across Canada. Our objective is to accelerate Newad’s growth rate by mobilizing long-lasting partnerships with advertisers who are concerned with optimizing their return on investment with the Youth and Affluent,” comments Lino Ricco.

    Moreover, Jean-Philippe Leduc and Brian Wyatt, Executive Vice Presidents, Client Relations and Business Development, both took an active role in Lino Ricco’s arrival in the team. “Lino will bring a new dimension to our sales team. His years of industry experience, combined with his great leadership, will help take Newad to the next level,” comments M. Leduc.

    A reference in the Canadian industry, Lino Ricco has mastered the Indoor Advertising environment for many years. He’s one of Newad’s original founders and shareholders, notably as a Sales Vice President from 1995 to 1997, during which time he greatly contributed to the company’s expansion in Toronto. After his departure in 1997, he remained very active in the Indoor Advertising and Experiential Marketing industries, contributing to the development of many businesses, most notably as Roar Media and Media One’s Founding President.

    Strategic acquisition of Media One’s assets
    Yesterday, Newad finalized its acquisition of Media One’s assets, a transaction carried out by Philippe Marchessault, Newad’s Executive Vice President of Operations, Development and Innovation. “This strategic acquisition is in line with our growth objectives in Toronto and Canada as a whole. With the integration of over 500 new establishments to our current network, Newad’s network is now comprised of over 3,000 businesses from coast to coast. This transaction with Media One reinforces and consolidates Newad’s privileged positioning in Ontario and Canada, as we continue our sustained growth in an environment that is highly competitive, even fragile for certain competitors.”

    Thursday, November 17, 2011

    Perceptive Pixel demo of 82" multi-touch display

    Here's a video of Perceptive Pixel demoing the world's largest multi-touch LCD at SIGGRAPH 2011. The 82-inch monster is powered by an NVIDIA Quadro video card and supposedly supports an unlimited number of simultaneous touches.

    Tuesday, November 15, 2011

    Panasonic Canada hands out free memberships to ScreenScape service

    ScreenScape Networks Inc. announced today that Panasonic Canada Inc. is offering new Panasonic digital signage LCD display customers with a complimentary one-year subscription to their popular community-based digital signage service.

    "Business owners thinking about joining ScreenScape to boost sales and marketing can now get started with one-year of service compliments of Panasonic" says Magnus McDermid, General Manager, Computer and AV Solutions Group, Panasonic Canada Inc. "Our line of Full HD digital signage LCD displays offers excellent choices for ScreenScape customers looking for a clear and vibrant display solution that brings in-store media to life".

    For a limited time, Panasonic will be including a promotional card with every new LF20 and LF25 -series Widescreen Full HD digital signage LCD display shipped in Canada. Each promotional card will feature a printed access code that allows an end user to unlock an entire year of service from ScreenScape.

    ScreenScape is a popular online service for engaging audiences in physical places through the use of digital displays. Venue managers can log in to ScreenScape from anywhere and quickly build dynamic programming for their own network of screens. By connecting with other members of the ScreenScape Community they can draw upon a pool of fresh content, such as online video, or push their own promotional messages to audiences inside other places of business that use ScreenScape.

    "Panasonic is pleased to be providing its customers with a simple and cost-effective solution for digital signage that will help their business engage customers in new ways," said McDermid.

    "We're making it easier for businesses to tap into the power of place-based media to drive real business value," commented Mark Hemphill, Founder and Chief Operating Officer of ScreenScape. "Panasonic offers a compelling line of professional Full HD LCD displays that are ideal for digital signage applications. By giving their customers complimentary access to ScreenScape it is now that much easier for businesses of all sizes to join the ScreenScape Community and see why it is the fastest growing network of its kind on the planet."

    Monday, November 14, 2011

    Chief makes mounting iPads easy

    Chief Manufacturing, a Minneapolis, MN-based A/V mounting solutions provider, announced that its new iPad 2® interface bracket is now available. The new accessory securely attaches an Apple® iPad 2 to a Chief monitor mount, creating a flexible, ergonomic solution.

    Chief also has a first-generation iPad version available. Both allow an iPad to be mounted to most Chief F or K-Series wall, desk or pole mounts. Removal is also easy as the interface bracket can be removed without the use of tools, making it extremely convenient when you’re on the go.

    Chief is touting the solution as being "perfect for digital signage and control system applications". Unless I'm misreading something, I don't necessarily agree with the digital signage part. Although many of the iPad's characteristics — its very small form-factor, relatively low price, ease of procurement, its ubiquitousness and availability of programmers for the platform — make it an interesting option for small kiosks or small signs, it seems like Chief's product would make them extremely easy to steal!

    Wednesday, November 9, 2011

    DSA Crown Award winners

    The Digital Screenmedia Association (DSA) has announced the winners for the DSA Crown Awards, which recognizes excellence in digital out-of-home content.

    As mentioned in our post last Tuesday, the St. Joseph Content / TD Canada Trust entry was the only Canadian execution represented...and it won Gold in the Point of Wait category!
    Here's the complete list of winners:
    Category – Point of Sale
    • Gold: Sprint, NASCAR Grand Moment, submitted by Two West, Inc.
    • Silver: Sprint, 3D Park LCD, submitted by Two West, Inc.
    • Bronze (tie): Smashburger Digital Menu Boards, submitted by WAND Corp.
    • Bronze (tie): Sprint, Diner LCD, submitted by Two West, Inc.
    Category – Point of Wait
    • Gold: Complete Digital Content Strategy and Digital Signage Implementation for TD Canada Trust, submitted by St. Joseph Content
    • Silver: Harrah's Cherokee Hotel Lobby Video Wall, submitted by Alpha Video Creative
    • Bronze: Tri Counties Bank Engages the Community, submitted by EWI Worldwide
    Category – Point of Transit
    • Gold: PNC Auto Loan Spot, submitted by John Ryan
    • Silver: PNC Street Marketing Content, submitted by John Ryan
    Honorable Mentions:
    • Sam the Cooking Guy - Fish Stick Tacos, submitted by Premier Retail Network (PRN)
    • Build-A-Bear HearMe Digital Sound Station, submitted by Build-A-Bear
    Judges for the DSA Crown Awards included Michael Chase of St. Joseph Content, Paul Flanigan of Rise Vision, Pat Hellberg of The Preset Group, Keith Kelsen of 5thScreen and author of Unleashing the Power of Digital Signage, and Anne White of PRN.
    The awards ceremony was co-hosted by Kelsen and Linda Hofflander of The Handa Group. "The winners of this year's inagural DSA Crown Awards definitively put the best of the best in the forefront of our industry while inspiring the rest of us to create even better content in the future," said Kelsen.

    Friday, November 4, 2011

    Wendy’s tests Canadian concept store with digital menu boards

    Wendy’s customers in Etobicoke were among the first to try out new menu items in a new, ultra-modern setting as part of the QSR’s testing of four new concept stores in North America.

    Wendy’s is testing Redhead Roasters proprietary coffee and fresh baked goods including oatmeal bars, cookies, muffins and brownies alongside a new customer ordering process, digital menu boards, new service staff uniforms and redesigned product packaging.

    "This is a very different experience from what Wendy's customers are used to," said Ron Baugh, senior vice president of Wendy's Restaurants of Canada. "Three years of research and feedback from thousands of people are reflected in this exciting new concept store. The changes are more than cosmetic. We've updated our customer experience indoors and out as well."

    The new restaurant concept has been designed to deliver more open space, brighter dining rooms with bigger windows and a variety of seating options from booths to high tops to cozy chairs around a fireplace. The new concept is also equipped with free Wi-Fi. Customers can view the baking and prep areas to convey the notion of “fresh.”

    Design elements include natural colors, brick and wood materials and bold use of the color red. A bright red center wall celebrates Wendy's heritage with the well-known quote from founder Dave Thomas, "Quality is our recipe," and signage in the new entry way reads, "Welcome to real. Welcome to fresh. Welcome to Wendy's Etobicoke". Each sign in the new stores will be tailored to their home cities.

    The company will evaluate the four concepts based on customer feedback and consumer research. A second new concept location is slated to open in Kingston this December.

    Thursday, November 3, 2011

    Willingdon Church Powers Digital Signage with Audience Software

    Willingdon Church, located in Burnaby, British Columbia, is using Capital Networks' Audience software platform to power the digital signage network recently installed in the lobby of the multi-venue place of worship.

    Willingdon enjoys a strong connection to the local community where over 4000 members attend weekend services which are simultaneously translated into 10 languages, reflecting the cultural diversity of the city of Burnaby. The church hosts a variety of musicals, weekly sermons, worship services and concerts in a pair of halls including the 1300 seat Sanctuary venue.

    The first phase of the digital signage installation includes eleven flat panel displays located in various locations throughout the lobby of the church. Messaging for the initial phase includes a variety of welcome messages to members and visitors, as well as the promotion of upcoming events at the facility. The Audience software platform is responsible for the creation and management of content on the network, including the automation of daily room schedules.

    Local Authorized Audience Reseller, MVCC, located in Burnaby, provided the Audience software platform, while also providing installation services and ongoing network support to Willingdon Church.

    Future plans for the installation include live streaming video footage from the main auditorium, menu board signage in the church cafe and incorporating the digital signage network into the Willingdon Church emergency messaging system.

    Tuesday, November 1, 2011

    Shuttle Launches Matrox-Powered Mini PC to Support Larger Multi-Display Configurations

    Matrox Graphics Inc. today announced that Shuttle Inc., a leading specialist in innovative mini PCs, has validated the Matrox M-Series multi-display graphics cards with the new Shuttle XPC H7 5820S mini PC. The M-Series PCI Express (PCIe) x16 boards support up to eight DisplayPort or single-link DVI monitors at resolutions of up to 2560x1600 per display. A second M-Series card can be combined within the H7 5820S workstation, allowing system integrators to actualize a wide range of multi-display installations in corporate, digital signage, security surveillance, process control, and other professional environments.

    Measuring only 19 centimeters (7.5 inches) in height, the space-saving Shuttle XPC H7 5820S mini PC comes equipped with an Intel Core i7 processor with up to six cores and up to 16 GB of DDR3 memory to reliably run the most demanding professional applications. The high-performance H7 5820S can be incorporated with one or two M9128 dual-monitor, M9138 triple-monitor, M9140/M9148 quad-monitor, and M9188 octal boards. With up to 2 GB of on-board memory and advanced desktop management features such as stretched and independent desktop modes, M-Series cards render pristine image quality and exceptional functionality across all displays.

    "Shuttle is excited to be integrating Matrox's flagship graphics cards within the H7 5820S mini PC," said Tom Seiffert, Head of Marketing & PR Europe, Shuttle Inc. "Customers will be delighted to add M-Series boards into our solution for deployments that can range from enterprise wide dual-monitor workstations to visualization platforms across an immersive 16-display configuration."

    "Space-conscious environments migrating to smaller PCs will typically sacrifice multi-display functionality, but this is not the case with Shuttle's new H7 5820S," said Ron Berty, Business Development Manager, Matrox Graphics Inc. "This hardware collaboration allows Shuttle to leverage M-Series' technology and build a professional-grade workstation that can deliver multi-monitor installations at par or even better than their larger form-factor counterparts."

    St. Joseph Content nominated and judging at DSA Crown Awards

    The Digital Screenmedia Association (DSA) has announced this year's nominees for its yearly Crown Awards recognizing the impact of excellent content in out-of-home environments through the use of digital signage, self-service kiosks, and mobile technology.

    The categories are Point of Wait (dwell time), Point of Sale (shoppers), and Point of Transit (people on the go). Within each of the three categories, entrants have tp select one of the following two sub-categories: Content run on a digital signage / kiosk network (one-way or interactive), and content campaign run across multiple screens (digital signage/kiosk plus mobile, online and/or TV).

    The nominees are:
    • Complete Digital Content Strategy and Digital Signage Implementation for TD Canada Trust, submitted by St. Joseph Content
    • Harrah's Cherokee Hotel Lobby Video Wall, submitted by Alpha Video Creative
    • PNC Auto Loan Spot, submitted by John Ryan
    • PNC Street Marketing Content, submitted by John Ryan
    • Smashburger Digital Menu Boards, submitted by WAND Corp.
    • Sprint, 3D Park LCD, submitted by Two West Inc.
    • Sprint, Diner LCD, submitted by Two West Inc.
    • Sprint, NASCAR Grand Moment, submitted by Two West Inc.
    • Tri Counties Bank Engages the Community, submitted by EWI Worldwide
    St. Joseph Content's submission is the only Canadian entry. They will also be represented on the judging panel by Michael Chase. He will be joined by Paul Flanigan of Rise Vision; Pat Hellberg of The Preset Group; Keith Kelsen of 5thScreen and author of "Unleashing the Power of Digital Signage"; and Anne White of PRN.

    The gold, silver and bronze DSA Crown Awards winners in the three categories above will be announced Nov. 8th at the DSA Pre-Show Party, the night before Customer Engagement Technology World (CETW) begins in New York City at Dave & Buster's Times Square.

    Here are some pictures of St. Joseph Content's work for TD Canada Trust:

    Friday, October 28, 2011

    Case Study: Digital Menu Boards at iQ Food Co.

    Montreal-based digital signage integrator Mirada Media have released a case study on the use of digital menuboards at iQ Food Co. in Toronto. The installation features four 46" LCD screens in portrait orientation, three of which are menus and the remaining one for promotional videos.

    The case discusses how the new take-away concept located at 100 Wellington Street West achieved strategic and operational flexibility, a lower cost of ownership, and an enhanced customer experience by using digital menu boards instead of static.

    " [We] knew that over the course of the first several months, [our] entire model (and menu) would be tweaked: popular items would be heavily promoted and the dogs would be pulled.", Alan Bekerman, iQ Food Co. founder.

    Follow the link to read the case study on how Mirada Media Digital Menu Boards Increase Flexibility & Customer Engagement at Toronto-Based iQ Food Co.

    Here's a video of some of the promotional content on their menu boards:

    Thursday, October 27, 2011

    Happy Hubbiversary!

    Celebrating its first anniversary this month, the Communitech HUB is emerging as a major global destination in Waterloo Region for established and start-up companies to foster collaboration and growth in a supportive, high tech environment. Christie®, a world leader in visual technology displays, is a founding member, visionary and major sponsor of the HUB. The company notes that the centre hosts more than 300 tours a month for high profile delegations from around the world, and nearly 5,000 visitors in the past year, reflecting its growing success.

    “The HUB is a digital technology 'thinkubator', accelerating Waterloo Region’s position on the digital stage,” said Gerry Remers, president and COO, Christie Digital Systems Canada. “As a founding member, Christie is proud of the enormous progress achieved by the HUB in such a short time, establishing a supportive environment for like-minded people to come together and collaborate.”

    The HUB, supporting the revitalization of the downtown area core, is part of the Canadian Digital Media Network, with an ecosystem that offers job creation and wealth growth. To this end, it extends invitations to an international audience of established and start-up companies from all over the world, including Egypt, Greece, Russia and China. It uses technology to accelerate relationships, business customers, revenues, and job growth. In addition to providing technology solutions and expertise, as well as conducting tours, Christie has been active in coordinating symposiums on-site, such as the 3D Learning Symposium, organized with Desire2Learn, which brought thought leaders from around the world together to discuss 3D visualization for training and learning.

    Dr. Kevin Tuer, VP of Digital Media at Communitech, and managing director of the Canadian Digital Media Network, noted, “Great things can happen when we collaborate, when we do things together, instead of working in our own silos. With support of companies like Christie, the HUB continues to establish its reputation in Canada and around the world as a place where technology facilitates the sharing of ideas and helps companies of every size unleash the full potential of their entrepreneurial vision.”

    In the year since the HUB opened its doors, the Christie-designed and maintained HUB Interactive Virtual Environment (HIVE), a four-sided 3D immersive environment powered by 12 Christie Mirage HD6 DLP® projectors, has emerged as one of the centre’s most exciting installations and a major attraction. Christie has made the HIVE – among the world’s most advanced 3D research tools – accessible to every sector of the economy, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which might never have had the opportunity to experience such technology. It is transforming understanding, expanding possibilities for research and innovation, and for generating jobs. Christie has installed similar immersive environments in top-level institutions such as the Louisiana Immersive Technology Enterprise (LITE)and the Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City.

    The HUB features the following Christie products:

    Hub Interactive Virtual Environment (HIVE) – Features 12 Christie Mirage HD6 3D stereographic projectors powering a 20 feet by x 10 feet, four-sided, 3D enabled ‘immersive environment.’ It enables the display of vast amounts of data, and is finding a wide range of applications in markets that include architectural, government, medical research, culture and the arts, and industries such as automotive and aviation. The HIVE uses the Christie Spyder X20 video processor, which is also installed in the Theatre/Event Space and Executive Briefing Room, for wider content sharing and collaboration across disciplines.

    Tannery Event Space – Features a 3D-capable multi-screen system powered by four Christie Mirage WU7 DLP® projectors and a Christie Spyder X20 video processor. It is a reconfigurable room system design that offers multiple connection points for presentations.

    Pollock Executive Briefing Room – A Stereo 3D-capable Christie Mirage WU7 HD DLP® Projector with multi-source windowing capabilities, and 50 pairs of active glasses for 3D viewing.

    Reception Area – An array of 30 Christie® MircroTiles® in a wall ribbon and top hat configuration, featuring content developed by local students from Conestoga College.
    “The HUB represents a truly collaborative effort by industry, government and the community,” said Remers. “It is removing barriers to accessing and sharing information, and thereby powering the economy of Waterloo Region in a dramatic, highly visual way. Christie values its partnership, and is committed to providing its advanced visualization tools, expertise and other, diverse resources to help promote its goals.”
    To celebrate Hubbiversary, tours of the Communitech HUB will take place tonight from 6-8 p.m.

    Coquitlam Sports Complex Dives into Digital Signage with Audience Software

    The City of Coquitlam, located in lower mainland British Columbia, Canada, is using the Audience software platform to power the recently installed digital signage network in the Poirier Sport and Leisure Complex.
    Located in southwest Coquitlam, the Poirier Sport and Leisure Complex is a fully integrated ice and aquatic recreational complex with facilities including a 2200 seat arena, NHL regulation size rink, fitness centre, lap and leisure pools, restaurant, meeting rooms and banquet halls.

    The City of Coquitlam recently installed the digital signage network to keep visitors informed with daily updates regarding complex information, upcoming events, and daily schedules for each facility. Multiple screens located at entrances to the complex display a variety of information including pool schedules and dressing room assignments, automated by the Audience software platform.

    Local Authorized Audience Reseller, MVCC, located in Burnaby, British Columbia, provided the Audience software platform responsible for content creation, management and data automation, while also providing installation services and ongoing network support to the City of Coquitlam.

    Capital Networks Limited provided production services and Audience software training to the Poirier Sport and Leisure Complex staff.

    Wednesday, October 26, 2011

    Blue Mountain Resort replacing current software for Omnivex

    Omnivex Corporation, provider of content management software for digital signage networks, announced that their software has been selected by Blue Mountain Resort in Collingwood, Ontario, Canada, to power an extensive digital signage network throughout their facilities. Blue Mountain will replace their existing digital signage software with Omnivex Moxie software, to manage displays throughout their extensive resort to meet their diverse list of applications for digital signage, conference and meeting room displays, including interactive wayfinding, and menu boards, to name a few of the immediate priorities.

    Blue Mountain had deployed and maintained three separate digital signage software solutions, but found that they were not able to accomplish all of their goals and that maintaining three separate systems was becoming too labor intensive. The company decided that in order to streamline operations and make the day-to-day administration of the digital signage more manageable, they wanted to find one platform that would enable them to consolidate the existing system. "Our primary goal with this deployment was to have one centrally managed digital signage system that would be interactive, flexible and scalable," said John Gowers, Director of IT, Blue Mountain Resorts. He continued, "After an extensive evaluation process, we selected Omnivex Moxie software for its ability to address all of our requirements with one comprehensive platform."

    Blue Mountain Resort and its amenities attract hundreds of thousands of people each year. The resort is spread over 360 acres and includes ski slopes, shops, restaurants, hotels and a conference center. Ensuring that guests know about all of the activities and events the resort has to offer is a key factor in ensuring they are provided with the best possible vacation experience. Blue Mountain strives to provide their guests with an outstanding stay at the resort and felt that the right digital signage system could help them improve the overall guest experience, by providing visitors with access to information when and where they need it. For example, navigating such a large facility is somewhat difficult, so interactive wayfinding is the perfect solution to address this problem. All of the different departments within Blue Mountain had varying requirements and ideas about how digital signage could improve the guest experience in their area.

    Omnivex Moxie software will allow each department to have local access to the system so that they can customize content and address their specific needs, while the primary operator can maintain control of the network and certain global content assets to uphold brand standards. The software has the flexibility to meet all their needs, with one integrated platform that can manage all of their digital signage requirements. "Moxie software will tie into our existing systems - such as our event booking system, for the conference and meeting room displays - and our established processes to reduce the workload associated with maintaining an accurate and up to date digital signage system," said Gowers. "We felt that this was the best solution, because our employees can continue with their existing workflows and systems and the software will automatically reflect that information on the appropriate screens. There is no need for additional training, process changes or maintaining another system," concluded Gowers.

    Blue Mountain Resorts Ltd. is part of the Intrawest Resorts group of experiential destinations. Primarily known for its outstanding ski and snowboard facilities, Blue Mountain continues to evolve from a winter playground into a premier four season destination resort. The nationally ranked Monterra Golf Course, seven-acre private beach on Georgian Bay and more than 60,000 square feet of conference facilities, all within 90 minutes of the largest population base in Canada.

    Thursday, October 20, 2011

    Astral OOH testing digital columns in Montreal

    I never thought I'd see the day that outdoor (as in outside) advertising screens would be using LCD's in a place like Montreal where the weather can be quite extreme but Astral Out-of-Home seems to have pulled it off. Astral unveiled a digital column prototype located just outside of the new Claire and Marc Bourgie Pavilion of Québec and Canadian Art at the Montréal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA) at the building's inauguration.

    The column is equipped with two liquid-crystal displays that, just like Astral Out-of-Home's Digital network faces, feature six alternating messages per minute, broadcast seven days a week by our state-of-the-art Digital Control Centre. The 72-inch (1.83m), high definition screens with a 1920p x 1080p resolution provide unparalleled readability in sunlight thanks to the highest intensity technology currently available on the market.

    "Astral Out-of-Home sets itself apart through innovation," said Luc Sabbatini, President of Astral Out-of-Home. "This new urban column demonstrates once again our willingness to use technology for the benefit of Montréal modernity and facilitate citizen communications in real time."

    Astral Out-of-Home's new prototype will promote numerous upcoming free exhibits and the 120 concerts planned by the MMFA for the 2011-2012 season. Its unique design was created by Michel Dallaire Design Industriel and manufacturing was handled by Groupe Poitras in Québec City.

    "The MMFA is proud to innovate with an outstanding partner such as Astral Out-of-Home and we are thrilled with Michel Dallaire's design, perfectly integrated with its environment in front of the new pavilion, which is surrounded by a sculpture garden on Du Musée Avenue and Sherbrooke Street," said Danielle Champagne, Director of Communications and of the MMFA Foundation. "We thank Astral's technical team who accomplished a brilliant tour de force by delivering this project in record time." 

    Wednesday, October 19, 2011

    Deloitte selects ScreenScape as "Company-to-Watch"

    ScreenScape Networks Inc. ("ScreenScape") won a coveted Companies-to-Watch Award, one of four separate awards categories that make up the 2011 Deloitte Technology Fast 50TM Awards, the pre-eminent technology awards program in Canada. ScreenScape is the first Atlantic Canadian company to earn the distinction.

    The Companies-to-Watch Award honours early-stage Canadian technology companies in business less than five years. These companies exemplify many of the winning characteristics of Deloitte Technology Fast 50TM ranked companies, which are judged using a longer track record.

    "Companies-to-Watch award winners frequently go on to score high rankings in the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 once they have a five-year track record," said Richard Lee, National Leader, Technology, Media & Telecommunications Industry Group, Deloitte. "Screenscape has quickly distinguished itself for its innovative technology and entrepreneurship and this award recognizes its potential as a future leader in the Canadian technology industry."

    ScreenScape Founder and Chief Operating Officer, Mark Hemphill, credits the company's early success to its unique ability as an online service to engage audiences inside physical places through the use of digital displays. Hemphill said, "By offering a repository of community-shared content and a pool of targeted marketing opportunities, ScreenScape makes place-based media easier and more effective as a tool for engaging with today's connected consumer."

    The majority of Companies-to-Watch winners are potential global leaders in technology sectors that didn't even exist five years ago. To win the award, companies must display the kind of management expertise and superior technology that mark a successful early-stage company poised for continued growth. To qualify for the Companies-to-Watch Award, candidates must have been operating less than five years. They must also be headquartered in Canada and devote a significant portion of their operating revenues to creating proprietary technology and/or intellectual property.

    Tuesday, October 18, 2011

    CoolSign at gov comm show; software not dead

    Some (namely the DailyDOOH) were quick to pronounce the CoolSign digital signage software suite, which is now owned by Haivision, dead and buried when Raffi Vartian was let go, but the product, along with the companies range of streaming hardware, will be showcased at GovComm 2011 show in Washington DC, USA. The event taking place November 1-2 is dedicated to government communications, highlighting the use of digital signs in non-public environments.

    "Government and military organisations are rapidly adopting advanced internet streaming technologies to meet a wide range of AV and defence communications requirements," explains Andy Vaughan, vice-president, federal sales, Haivision.

    RFP: Ontario Travel Information Centre Digital Signage

    The Ontario provincial government has an open RFP to setup and service a digital signage network at selected Ontario Travel Information Centres across the province for the purposes of advertising and promoting Ontario. A little late notice (closing is October 24, 11am EDT), the province is looking for industrial (Ed. I think commercial would be a better description) LCD for 24/7 use, digital signage media players, electrical and data cabling and other miscellaneous hardware.

    Search the MERX database of Canadian Public Tenders for "digital signage" to get more information.

    WMC Digital Media video walls in Edmonton City Centre to be measured by COMB

    The Board of Directors of the Canadian Out-of-Home Measurement Bureau (COMB) is pleased to announce that WMC Digital Media has joined the Bureau effective Fall 2011.

    WMC Digital Media will be launching its video walls in Edmonton City Centre October 5, 2011.

    COMB has conducted pedestrian traffic studies in Edmonton City Centre and will publish weekly pedestrian circulation figures for WMC’s video walls in the October edition of the COMB Data Report (publication date October 19, 2011).

    Walsh McPherson, Founder of WMC Digital Media, states, “COMB measurement is a solid investment that enables us to offer our innovative, high-impact video walls and upcoming OOH advertising products to leading brand advertisers that demand accountable, audited metrics”.

    Monday, October 17, 2011

    Subaru Canada intros Subaru.TV digital signage

    Subaru Canada, Inc. recently added digital signage into their dealership experience. Dubbed Subaru.TV, the screens display a collection of content developed or carefully selected by Subaru Canada to improve the brand identity and shopping experience while explaining their many products and services.

    The goal of their endeavor is to engage and entertain customers rather than have them be distracted by the random content and competitor advertising available on regular television. While many individual dealers or dealer groups have some form of digital signage in place, Subaru is among the first manufacturers in Canada to pioneer digital signage on a national level and has spent the past year sourcing or developing enough 1080p high-definition content to make this experience unique(Ed. I've owned two Subaru vehicles and my dealership has had some form of signage in the service area for a while).

    In May, Subaru Canada and partner 10net Managed Solutions began deploying a network of 42- and 52-inch Sharp LCD displays to its dealers across Canada. Powered by a highly customized Dell media server running Scala Player software, Subaru is driving unique content to distinct Sales and Service programming channels, which will be available in English and French. In addition, dealers running Aristo by PBS Systems Inc. and its integrated Media Suite will be able to display the status of vehicles in their service area, reducing traffic to the service counter. Subaru will be working with other DMS providers to offer similar integration.

    With two-thirds of its rollout already completed, dealers and customers will be able to enjoy unique HD content like the recently produced five-minute sneak peek of the new 2012 Subaru Impreza, which is on track to be released this October.

    "We didn't want this to be another boring menu-board style deployment cycling through advertising specials and promotions," said George Hamin, Director of eBusiness and Information Systems. "We wanted to make this seem like network television. just without the competitor advertising."

    Subaru is currently in discussions to secure nationally syndicated content like news and sports.

    Friday, October 14, 2011

    Montreal Airport Digital Signage Fail

    The picture above was taken at Montreal-Trudeau Airport recently by our friend and local brunch blogger @MtlBrunch. It depicts a typical type of #fail, the on-screen popup related to support software update warnings.

    This popup in particular is for Adobe's AIR platform, a runtime that enables developers to deploy cross-platform applications with web technologies like HTML, JavaScript and Adobe Flash.

    This airport has several types of digital signage on-site. Some are informational, like the Arrival/Departure boards. Some others are for entertainment, such as the pre-flight lounge with its "news-tainment" channel. A third type are promotional, such as the portrait ad screens in the Arrivals area.

    The screen above was in the outer concourse at an information desk where new arrivals could get varied information such as how to get to and around the city, where to stay, and what to do. Unfortunately for travelers new to the city, some important numbers were obscured by the Adobe update. On the upside, maybe they could learn about what PC updates look on a French operating system and pick up some of the language.

    Thursday, October 13, 2011

    RTOWN Communications, Palmer Rogers Encore form partnership

    RTOWN Communications, a B.C.-based media company, has announced a new strategic and equity partnership with Palmer Rogers Encore Ventures Inc.

    Palmer Rogers Encore is a joint venture between advertising executive Frank Palmer and financial executive Mike Rogers. Under the terms of the strategic partnership, Palmer Rogers Encore will provide RTOWN with business strategy support and financial management expertise as the company implements its aggressive growth strategy over the next number of years.

    "Digital advertising continues to build momentum as media planners shift money away from traditional television towards a more targeted approach to advertising," said Tom Horler, President of RTOWN Communications. "Working with Palmer Rogers Encore, we will be in a better position to take advantage of this trend as we implement our aggressive growth plans."

    Over the past 10 years, RTOWN's network has grown substantially based on its proven franchise model. The company currently operates in 12 markets across Canada and the Caribbean registering current reach of over 4.5 million impressions a week. With over a 1,000 market potential the company has an addressable market size of over $100 million dollars.

    According to a recent survey, more than 86 per cent of media planners said that they intend to include digital out-of-home in their media plans in 2012, which is up from 65 per cent who said they had included the medium in their plans in 2010.

    Final figures for 2010 are just being completed, but demonstrate that DOOH spending is predicted to reach $3.08 billion, an 18 per cent year-over-year increase. Experts project the growth to continue citing estimates of $3.56 billion in 2011 (15.5 per cent YOY), $4.05 billion in 2012 (13.8 per cent YOY) and approximately a 12 per cent YOY increase in 2013.

    "Media buyers and advertisers are hungry for digital out-of-home services because it provides consumers with information that fits with their interests so they'll tune in, watch and listen," said advertising executive Frank Palmer of Palmer Rogers Encore Ventures Inc. "RTOWN has strong fundamentals and its product is one of the best in the industry, which is why we're confident that the company will grow so quickly and successfully."

    RTOWN's sales have doubled between 2006 and 2010 with the recent strategic acquisitions of Around Town Media and Onext Media Corporation. The company's long-term goal is to be the dominant player and build a global company that provides a technology intensive service through a combination of organic growth, continued acquisition and merger.

    Wednesday, October 12, 2011

    Newad integrates 700 BarNet screens into digital offering

    Today, Newad Indoor is announcing a major growth in its digital offering due to the addition of 700 LCD screens in 140 bars and nightclubs. Advertisers will now have a total of 1,300 digital screens targeting Young & Affluent, avant-garde and trendsetting consumers in Canada’s large urban city centers.

    These new 24-to-180-inch digital screens integrated into Newad’s offer are located in Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary and Montreal and operated by BarNet, a Canadian company specializing in digital indoor advertising. In addition to running advertisements of 15, 30, 45 or 60 seconds as well as entertaining content, these LCD screens offer a variety of interactive features. They can be easily updated, which promotes flexible integration of advertising content. They are located inside bars and nightclubs, very often behind the bar, around dance floors, in lounge areas and next to the coatcheck. They engage both male and female scenesters, urban socialites and avant-garde consumers benefitting from a higher purchasing power.

    “Our partnership with BarNet strengthens Newad’s digital offer and compliments the company’s 360º solution – one that is unique in Canada. Like never before, clients who are concerned with optimizing their revenues can expect a full range of products that are perfectly integrated into the lifestyle of a population segment difficult to reach with traditional media,” comments Newad’s CEO, Michael Reha.

    “We are pleased to share our extensive network and expertise with Newad so that national and local advertisers can benefit from new locations specifically designed to maximize the potential and impact of their campaigns,” adds Brandon Lu, president of BarNet.

    Among the 140 establishments that house the 700 screens, note, by city: Toronto : City Nightclub, Mansion Nightclub, Vancouver : Barcelona and Blvd 22 : Calgary : Jr's Billiards, Whiskey,  Montréal : Le Marquee and Muzique. On average, each establishment operates just over five screens and hosts 2,500 people weekly.

    Thursday, October 6, 2011

    Newad’s Indoor Network Integrates NFC Technology

    Newad, a Canadian indoor advertising media company, will integrate NFC (Near Field Communication) technology into its network. As of January 2012, NFC chips, embedded into the advertising displays, will allow smartphone owners to simply tap their phone to the ad and instantly connect to a wealth of information, discount coupons and even the ability to purchase the products being advertised. The technology will first be integrated into 200 of Newad’s Big Backlit boards, located within the top college and university campuses across the country, where there is an important – and growing – proportion of Canadian smartphone owners.

    The integration of NFC technology into an advertising environment is a first for Canada. As a reminder, NFC is already being viewed as the future worldwide standard for consumers who wish to carry out transactions and purchases without a wallet. Thus, Newad offers 200 advertising windows where both interaction and payment are possible. The purchase of concert and film tickets is among the many tangible examples of how one can make use of NFC technology. The technology also allows customers to receive relevant information including photos, videos, and store finders related to the advertised item.

    “This announcement is a testament to the constant evolution of advertising models, and to Newad’s ability to offer advertisers a range of cutting edge products. Not only is this good news for Newad and its advertisers, but for Canada’s entire advertising, marketing and mobility industry”, says Michael Reha, president and CEO of Newad. “The integration of NFC technology to our offer will now allow advertisers to establish a more direct relationship with consumers, to trigger more immediate and measurable purchasing decisions,” adds Reha.

    “It’s a revolution for the entire Out-of-Home Advertising industry, and we’re proud to be the first company in Canada making this announcement,” says Jerrid Grimm, Vice President, Client Service, and Regional Manager – Western Canada. “The first advertisers making use of our NFC network will have the opportunity to stand out because of their commitment to innovation, and to be in tune with a clientele that is eager to take part in new consumer experiences. Our research demonstrates that 60% of the country’s Young & Affluent already own a smart phone,” Grimm adds.

    This initiative came into being, thanks to a partnership between Newad and Vancouver’s Gauge Mobile, a technology partner and developer of the Scanvee platform, which integrates the NFC management system. As a reminder, the NFC chip is already embedded into the latest versions of BlackBerry and Android, as well as other devices such as Nokia and Samsung.

    Omnivex sponsoring live webinar on building end-to-end customer experiences

    Omnivex and Digital Signage Today are hosting a live webinar today at 2:00 PM EDT on how experts plan and implement cost effective digital signage solutions to engage audiences, build relationships and drive revenues at large public venues, such as sports stadiums and arenas. This webinar will look at real life examples of large-scale digital signage installations and what made them a success.

    The speakers will be Jeff Collard, President of Omnivex, and Chris Dill, who heads his own IT sports consultancy service and previously employed by the Portland Trailblazers NBA franchise.

    Participants will learn how to:

  • Build a project plan to maximize impact and ROI across budget cycles
  • Define a holistic approach to digital signage that meets business needs
  • Implement a solution that best leverages existing assets and resources

  • You can register here.

    Monday, October 3, 2011

    Canlan Ice Sports Scores with Screenscape Community-Based Digital Signage

    Canlan Ice Sports “Canlan”, North American leader in multi-purpose recreation facilities, announced today they have chosen ScreenScape Networks Inc. “ScreenScape”, to power a network of dynamic digital displays called CanlanTV.

    “While Canlan has benefited for some time from running digital displays in our facilities, ScreenScape allows us to manage these displays internally at a fraction of the cost,” commented Paul Dillon, Vice President of Sales, Marketing & Service for Canlan. “Their user-friendly interface allows for easy interaction and quick content updates. We are able to run CanlanTV content in all of our venues and at the same time, enable facility managers to play location-specific ads, all with the same level of ease. We took a long and hard look at the many providers and options out there and it was clear to us, ScreenScape is by far the most innovative, creative and exciting partner for our needs.”

    ScreenScape is an online service for engaging audiences in physical places. It offers its members a repository of community-shared content and a pool of targeted sales and marketing opportunities. According to ScreenScape, this community-based model makes place-based media easier and more affordable to deliver and more effective as a tool for engaging with today’s connected consumer.

    “ScreenScape’s integration with services like Twitter and YouTube equip us with tools to engage the millions of people who visit Canlan facilities throughout the year. CanlanTV acts as a source of entertainment and information. ScreenScape makes it easy to interact with the customers in our venues.”

    “We welcome Canlan Ice Sports to the ScreenScape community,” said Kevin Dwyer, CEO of ScreenScape. “Our growing community already includes a number of sporting goods brands and retailers. The Canlan family of ice sports facilities is another great addition and again demonstrates the advantages of our community-based model. We look forward to a long and successful partnership and will enjoy watching the growth of CanlanTV.”