It's hard to show tech-savvy consumers advertising. Your grandma might still be looking at every pop-up ad a rapacious Internet businessman can come up with, but between fast-forwarding past TV ad spots with your Digital Video Recorder, pop-up blockers in your browser, and the Do Not Call list, a lot of people are avoiding the vast majority of advertising that's being hurled at them. Advertisers never give up, though. They just try a different approach. High-tech ad avoidance is leading to a boom in one of the oldest forms of advertising: billboards everywhere. They just call it "Out of Home Media" now. The new places for ads — as well as the addition of digital and video capabilities to signs, bus shelters, phone kiosks and other sites — are among the reasons ad spending in the out-of-home category are second only to online advertising in growth.
The goal is to engage consumers “during the course of their daily lives in places they go on a frequent basis,” said Rick Sirvaitis, president at StoreBoard Media in New York, which puts ads on the security pedestals at the entrances and exits of retail outlets like drug stores.
“In 36 years in advertising, for the first time I can look people in the eye and guarantee every consumer will be exposed to the message,” Mr. Sirvaitis said, referring to a StoreBoard sign, “because you can’t miss it.”
Amusingly, the header on my browser window as I read the NYT article says: "Firefox prevented this site from opening a pop-up window."
I predict a boom in sales for outdoor media. And for black Magic Markers.