DSE2012: PhenomBlue Bringing Interactive Surface To Las Vegas

March 6, 2012 by Dave Haynes

One of the names that popped up in the exhibitor list this week was Phenomblue, an interactive agency from Omaha. I had not seen them around this space and was pleased to see a company that works outside this sector taking an interest and actually investing in being at Digital Signage Expo. Here’s my Q&A with Joe Olsen, CEO of Phenomblue:

Q – Can you give me the short and sweet summary of what your company does, as well as its background and where you are based?

A – Phenomblue is an interactive brand experience agency. We are comprised of strategists, designers and engineers using technology to connect people and brands. Founded in 2004 in Omaha, Neb., Phenomblue produces cutting-edge interactive and long-term technology partnership solutions for some of the biggest advertising agencies and consumer brands in the world.

Q – What brings you to DSE? Do you have a booth or are you camping out with another vendor?

A – We’ll be at DSE showcasing a few of our projects and talking with attendees about what’s going on in the Digital Signage space. Come find us at booth C18, inside the Digital Content Show.

Q – What are you showing and why?

A – We’ll be bringing along some examples of projects we’ve done – from strategy, UX and design to development and analysis. In the meantime or if you won’t be in attendance, you can see what we’ve done at http://book.phenomblue.com/.

Q – There has been no end of chatter about the need for digital signage to be much more interactive and engaging. As interactive brand guys, how do you see screens in retail and public spaces being used effectively?

A – Many of the most effective experiences out there utilize multi-touch technology to get users working and experiencing brands together. Some use mobile integration to bring experiences into the hands of users so that once they walk away from a digital sign they’re still interacting. And most importantly, any digital signage experience must provide a strong call to action.

Q – There are many interactive agencies that have done work that ends up on what’s called digital signage, but not a lot (or just about any) that have gone to the extent of actually marketing at a trade show specific to this sector. What’s your take – looking from the outside in – of this industry?

A – At Phenomblue, we place our emphasis on the execution of experiences with unpredictable interaction models, ensuring that desired outcomes are achieved. We value ideas, but for us effective execution is essential. We believe that together we work best. Experts coming together from various spaces have the power to collaborate and truly go integrated, producing what could be the best work in advertising and marketing of our time. That’s what brings us to shows like this – to find out what others are doing in their industries and to talk to others about what we can contribute as experts in ours.

Q – Can you tell me about any projects you’ve done that fit the digital signage mold?

A – As a Surface partner, we’ve been experimenting a lot with Surface 2 – and will be bringing along a reel with us of various projects that’ll also debut Dino Dig, our most recent Surface project. Another project you’ll see is Moppet Mashup, a virtual, digital puppet show, complete with an LCD projection puppet theatre that we created for Big Omaha, a conference on innovation and entrepreneurship. The puppets were 3D rendered avatars of each attendee and could dance, jump and fly around the environment. People were sharing their photos on Twitter, which kept the conference feed moving all day and a long line in the booth. This project was honored by the Webby’s in its Interactive Advertising category.



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