LED board guys use streamed Rock Band contest to get agency attention

May 29, 2009 by Dave Haynes

Vested Interest Alert: My new guys were in on this, but if it’s interesting, it’s interesting …

I was at an agency function in Toronto last night, with the focus on getting the media planning community more aware of the advertising opportunities at Dundas Square, a big public area that is increasingly taking on the look and foot traffic of New York’s famed Times Square. It’s not the same, at all, but there’s also a lot of LED board stuff going on.

I note this because what was cooked up by ClearChannel and the other media partners – PenEx Media, Outdoor Broadcast Network, Wham Mobile and Gridcast Media – was pretty cool, and worth relating.

The media companies got a large restaurant space overlooking the square, and invited the agencies to organize teams of four to come down and compete with each other playing Rock Band, with the agency running up the biggest point tally winning on behalf of a charity. The hook was the live streamed video of the competing bands on the LED boards operating within full view of the party. The stream was interspersed with a scoreboard showing team point totals. The mobile guys also ran a text message contest on the boards just for party-goers, and apparently got a heavy take-up based on people entering for prizes.

The result was piles of media people spending a lot of time looking at, and getting familiar with, the boards, and using the text messaging. I thought it was a pretty clever way to get what can be a jaded bunch doing something fun while they’re being gently pitched.

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