Tim Youngman: Temperature controlled outdoor advertising – as hot as the weather

Would you want ice cream in the rain?

Would you want ice cream in the rain? - Credit: citizenside.com

The world of advertising likes to paint a picture perfect world of British summertime for particular products. For example, you never see cider ads with people sitting in a pub garden huddling under umbrellas hiding from the rain while wearing jumpers.

It’s often forgotten that bad summer weather causes problems for brands as well as tennis players and farmers. Brands can spend hours and weeks carefully crafting a campaign for their product based on the good feelings generated by good weather, only for it to be completely ruined by it showing during a period of inclement rain and cold. Despite this every summer we are faced with ads filled with images of picture perfect summers days, even when they are the exception and not the norm.

However for every problem there is someone somewhere coming up with a solution and in this case it is, and I am not joking here, temperature controlled ad panels.

Stella Artois is now running ad slots across outdoor advertising company Posterscope digital poster boards for its Cidre brand. When the temperature rises two degrees or more above the average in the specific location using real time data an ad appears for the cider brand.

Costa Coffee has run a two month campaign on the London Underground working with CBS Outdoor who manage the ad slots there and who were pioneers of digital outdoor advertising. They promoted Costas Ice Cold Costa range on the underground network when the temperature went above 22C. The ads were location specific so when the temperature went up, a digital panel at a station exit not only delivered a promotional message but also directed underground users to the nearest Costa outlet that they could buy an Ice Cold shake from.


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Not only is this enormously clever but it will also reduce a lot of wasted spend and effort. Ad slots based on increased pollen counts are now also being introduced and this no doubt is just the start of a whole new advertising concept with winter brands already being lined up for temperature based campaigns. So weather sensor based advertising is here and will grow.

Tim Youngman is Director of Marketing for Archant www.about.me/timyoungman

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