Home Digital Out-Of-Home Argo Digital Solutions CEO Kates Says Digital Out-Of-Home Reaching Segmented Audiences For Advertisers Today

Argo Digital Solutions CEO Kates Says Digital Out-Of-Home Reaching Segmented Audiences For Advertisers Today


Jason Kates is Founder and CEO of Argo Digital Solutions, Inc. and rVue.com, a digital out-of-home advertising exchange.

Argo Digital Solutions CEO KatesAdExchanger.com: Can you give quantify the Digital Out-Of-Home (DOOH) reach for Argo’s rVue Exchange?   Do you think of reach in terms of networks or stores or consumers who are estimated to see particular digital media in a given day?

The rVue search engine quantifies its reach in a number of ways based on the needs of the individual agencies and networks we work with. Currently, rVue has amassed over 100,000 screens and nearly 2,000,000 daily impressions concentrated within the top DMAs throughout the country.

Why call rVue an exchange and not a meta network? How does it offer transparency and control to advertisers and signage owners?

That is a great question. It is first important to note is that a driving force behind the creation of rVue was to aid an industry we strongly believe in. Digital Out of Home (DOOH) has faced challenges in the past which included industry fragmentation, difficulty efficiently delivering high quality content as well as exposure and connection to advertisers and agencies wanting to place media. rVue was developed by our highly experienced, tech savvy engineers partnered with our advertising and marketing team. They bring a powerful combination of engineers with in-depth experience managing complex DOOH networks and marketers with agency and media experience. The result is rVue – designed to ease the process of buying and managing DOOH.

Like meta-networks, rVue has enrolled an ever-increasing number of individual out of home networks from all types of locations – arenas, doctor’s offices, pharmacies, malls, college campuses, grocery stores and more. It optimizes efficiency and effectiveness for both DOOH networks and advertisers looking to reach their target audience out of home. -rVue helps them connect with each other and generate revenue, and although rVue may share some characteristics of a meta network and advertising exchange it also has its differences. rVue is a web-based DOOH search engine that allows advertisers and agencies to search the DOOH networks within the system, develop and place a campaign, make the media buy, upload content, distribute the content to desirable venues and review the results, all from one place.

There are a number of ways in which advertisers and DOOH venues are given control within rVue. For example, advertisers are exposed to the growing directory of quality networks – many of which they were unaware of before. Now, they can set their budget, select their geo-targets and demographics, upload their content and virtually create a DOOH media campaign in a fraction of the time it had taken them in the past. As for the networks, they receive incredible exposure to advertisers and are presented with advertising opportunities that might not have otherwise been available with no risk and no cost.

“Addressable media” and targeting audience have been key phrase for 2009. Have you seen momentum in your addressable media offering this year?  Have large media agencies caught on?

Addressable advertising has caught the attention of some of the most recognizable brands in the world…brands that are designing campaigns based on identified zip codes, specific demographics, etc., to more effectively target an area or profile. Agencies not only understand addressability, but they are investing in early trials. rVue’s searchable directory, offering a multi-faceted database of geographics and demographics, integrated with venue types, content formats, etc., has been key in attractiing media planners and ad agency groups who are looking to get the most “impressionable” bang for their buck.

What’s happening with creative in DOOH campaigns?  Do traditional TV campaigns translate better than online campaigns, for example?

With DOOH, we are reaching an audience that is targeted beyond their geography to now potentially include interests, shopping habits and traffic or lifestyle patterns. Our experience has led us to develop a philosophy about content presented in DOOH which is more like content for the internet rather than traditional broadcast. At its simplest, it comes down to “still images for a moving audience and moving images for a still audience.” Content should be built to be highly engaging and provide the audience with a clear message without audio as it isn’t always available or effective in out of home environments.


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When not used strictly for branding purposes, DOOH campaigns can be designed to be more interactive than traditional TV and offer direct response vehicles to get the most out of the media experience and collect valuable feedback from the responses.

Regarding reporting, is a dashboard approach possible for viewing results across rVue?

The rVue advertising application provides a full accountability package wherein campaign owners can download affadavits, pay only for actual airings and leverage prior campaign histories in building new campaigns.

What does BroadSign Open do for Argo, rVue and cross channel campaign strategies?

Through an API, software providers like BroadSign and others, can connect their networks into the rVue engine, making themselves available to advertisers. Today, rVue consists of a true cross-section of networks utilizing a variety of software, and all are available to advertisers to facilitate the creation of campaigns.

What overall recommendations would you make to agencies as they step into addressable media via DOOH?

Clearly, agencies are moving away from traditional advertising and looking for effective digital solutions. DOOH is one of today’s fastest growing medias despite economic conditions that are pulling budgets from more traditional medias. When asked by agencies for recommendations, I tell them to invest in their campaign with bandwidth in mind – from both a time and reach perspective. I want them to think beyond running the same :30s or :60s commercials they’re running on TV. They need to look closely at creative and target their audience more succinctly, not only based on who the audience is, but where they are and what compels them. When appropriate, agencies should include an interactive component to their campaign to further engage their audience. And lastly, but most importantly, they should analyze the effectiveness of their campaign in helping them define and refine the next one.

Is it more about brand awareness right now or direct response campaigns with digital signage?  Where do you see this evolving?

Both approaches are critical parts of digital out of home and are somewhat dependent on where the content is running and the mission of the brand. Certain venues lend themselves better to branding opportunities, while others help drive sales and provide ideal direct response environments. There will always be a place for branding in DOOH, but as video to mobile becomes more and more accessible, the ability to interact with target audiences, via an opt-in approach, will become incredibly attractive and is where I believe we are headed.

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