Airports are very different places from when I started my working life, and technology has done a lot to not only change travel experiences, but also help monetize what are, often, very busy public places.
The Greater Toronto Airports Authority runs that city’s Pearson Airport. It is the busiest airport in Canada, with almost 50 million passengers going through the two terminals last year.
Tina Williams runs the media and partnerships programs at Pearson, which is increasingly using technology for everything from fixed, standardized ad positions to very customized, elaborate brand activations that mix mediums. In one case, an automaker’s brand messaging starts with projection mapping and video walls in the parking garage and extends all the way to a micro showroom across from the airport’s busiest gate.
I’ve known Tina for a bunch of years, extending back to when she did similar work at Canada’s busiest shopping mall. We spoke last week at an airport that, at times, has felt like a second home for me. We grabbed a room at an Air Canada lounge, which is why it’s got a bit of an echo.
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.