Uncategorized December 2, 2011

Spending a penny goes hi tech

Given recent economic forecasts and the general rocky business climate, the Vistage  blog has, understandably,  has not always been a bundle of joy . To rebalance things a little, we bring news of an unusual new product which could potentially cause a splash in the advertising world. There is no takeaway wisdom or great insight into the business world to be gained from this post but it is a fun Friday story.

The aptly named Captive Media company have devised a hands-free games/advertising console which can be retro-fitted to the urinals in men’s toilets. As well as a range of promotions for the host venue and adverts for external companies, the consoles feature a variety of video games. The games are controlled by what the company refers to as ‘gents’ streams’ which are monitored by infra-red detectors.

So far, so quirky but the consoles’ makers have a serious purpose beyond the headline-grabbing potential of games with titles such as On the Piste. Research shows that the average man spends 55 seconds on each visit to a urinal. This is equivalent to two TV advertising slots. Obviously, the consoles have a captive audience for this period and trials have shown that users are very receptive to any messages which are bundled along with the games. This is particularly welcome news for advertisers who want to target young males; a demographic which has proved fairly resilient to traditional advertising mediums.

Bar owners have found that advertising their drinks promos on the consoles can lead to significant surges in sales. Even the cleaners who work in the bars fitted with Captive Media’s consoles are pleased as the games apparently encourage users to aim more carefully than they might do otherwise.

The blog wishes Captive Media and their new device the very best of luck but can’t help feeling nostalgic for the times when a curt nod to a neighbour and perhaps a grunted greeting were the only interactions required during a bathroom visit.

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