Lightbox Expands Beyond Shopping Malls With New Screen Network In Groceries
June 29, 2022 by Dave Haynes
The media company that made its mark primarily with big digital totem displays in shopping malls is now putting smaller displays at grocery check-out positions, in what is branded as the Lightbox Digital Video Grocery Network.
Known for many years as Adspace, the company rebranded as Lightbox about three years ago. It still does malls, but is adding more digital display footprint by putting screens in horizontal mode at supermarket checkouts and on top of Redbox kiosks. Overall, the company says the “expansion adds 2,800 supermarkets across the country and 3,000 screens to Lightbox’s retail footprint.”
“Over 100 grocery brands such as Albertsons and Giant Eagle have 30” screens located on Redbox kiosks primarily at entrance, while a NYC-centric network – in partnership with Velocity MSC – includes D’Agostino’s and Gristede with 31” screens at checkout. The prominent digital video placements are strategically positioned to help advertisers connect with shoppers throughout their retail visit.”
Lightbox’s Digital Video Grocery Network also reaches the Hispanic demographic through El Rancho Supermercado, the leading grocer catering to those communities across Texas.
“Demand for these audiences is very high, and this is something our team has been working on for over a year. We didn’t want to dip our toe in the water, we wanted to go big. This network significantly increases our screen count and delivers a very distinct audience across some of the biggest grocers in the U.S.” says Greg Glenday, CEO of Lightbox. “These are high-frequency destinations – with American consumers going to the grocery store on average 1.9 times per week – and the screens provide an invaluable connection point for advertisers to reach audiences in brand-safe environments. Since we’re already experts in effectively reaching consumers in a shopping state-of-mind via our mall network, the grocery locations are a natural extension of our retail media portfolio.”
Lightbox also has screens in WeWork spaces, commercial window fronts, and recreational destinations across the U.S.
The screens at checkout thing has been around in a bunch of different iterations for pretty much the entire lifespans of the digital signage and digital OOH industries. It is one of those things that entrepreneurs keep trying, even if the dynamics seem all wrong.
An Austin, TX company called Grocery TV – I do like brands that leave no mystery as to what they do – has raised $35M in investor capital to put smallish, tablet-like screens above the impulse buy racks in grocery checkouts across the U.S.
With either company, the big challenges are:
- that if the intent is to influence purchases, the marketed items need to be right there at checkout … unless brands somehow think shoppers will abandon the checkout and head back into the store aisles;
- if the screen-installed aisles are even open, given modern-day hiring issues. That’s less of an issue with the Lightbox screens that face into the store.
Grocery is a high opportunity environment because of the frequency of visits and the need for brands to get noticed and bought. But I think there is more and better opportunity at the end-caps and in the store aisles than at the checkout. That said, maybe these guys will figure it out when predecessors mostly have not.