One of the things that gets repeated over and over again, but usually ignored, is the need to get content on screens that is unique and actually interesting to the targeted viewing audience. This definitely qualifies as unique.
The LA-based consulting group Future Content LLC is running something called Viewtopia this week, live from the mammoth South By Southwest alt music and nerd fest in Austin, Texas.
The Viewtopia event will be showcasing five days of music, live performance, interview and event content through technology, marketing, and content partners Justin.tv, Zannel, Blip.fm, Tap 11, Whole Foods Market (WFM), and Planet-Tek, says a press release.
This will mark the very first live programming event streamed to a major national retailer’s Digital Out of Home (DOOH) system—lifestyle leader Whole Foods Market. Viewtopia: SXSW will stream to a large-format plasma screen at the entrance to the Whole Foods’ Lincoln Park, IL flagship store as well as throughout their dynamic storewide digital signage program called The Marketplace Station™ and through all partner networks.
“We call this collaboration ‘interactive reality TV in real time;’ true deviceagnostic convergence content,” says Future Content LLC founder Heidi Richman, “The outbound content (which will get home page placement on both Justin.tv and Blip.fm) is a really important part of the content flow, but due to the interactive nature of our partners it is the inbound, viewer-supplied content that makes Viewtopia special. We broadcast with, not at viewers.”
“We’re delighted to have Whole Foods Market, Wente Vineyards, and the rest of our partners to help launch Viewtopia and Future Content LLC,” Richman continues, “the brand, marketing and advertising implications are major, and a large part of the innovation is lead by our tech partners. Through Tap 11’s involvement we can offer back-end metrics unparalleled in traditional broadcasting, and with the DOOH piece, we are doing so where 70% of buying decisions are made: at the point of sale.”
Raji Kalra of Toronto-based Planet-Tek, which installed and manage the Chicago Whole Foods location as well as several in Canada, thinks this is a first. “A big wine sponsor helps set the mood at retail, while patrons can grab a glass of their vino and watch the music festival live.”
Dave Haynes is the founder and editor of Sixteen:Nine, an online publication that has followed the digital signage industry for some 14 years. Dave does strategic advisory consulting work for many end-users and vendors, and also writes for many of them. He’s based near Halifax, Nova Scotia, on Canada’s east coast.